We are a group of concerned Thurston County Citizens working for a sensible wireless code in our county.
Thurston County is currently in the process of updating it's wireless code to comply with updated regulations from the FCC and to allow for the small wireless (4G/5G) rollout.
The Thurston County Planning Commission has approved a draft of the wireless code and has sent it to the Board of County Commissioners for consideration, a public hearing date has not yet been announced. (draft found here).
Why Should You Be Concerned?
According to the draft code, wireless facilities can be placed in the right of way, in your front yard or your neighbors yard, with no notices of application or approval and you get 3 days notice before installation if it's adjacent to your house (no notice to neighbors).
There is no verification or testing that the wireless radiation being emitted is within FCC "safe" range other than a statement provided by a "qualified" person from the wireless company.
In other communities where this is being rolled out, exposure levels are regularly being found above FCC "safe" levels. The only recourse is to report them to the FCC and they will investigate, eventually, or you can get a lawyer.
In addition to an unsightly wireless emitter or tower in your view with radiation invading your home, they can also install up to 4 large electrical boxes to support the facility cluttering your yard and blocking access to street parking.
These are just a few of the dozens of issues with the draft code. This code represents a removal of due process, failure to protect property values, and the health and safety of county citizens.
What do we want?
Reasonable rules for all wireless facilities need to be developed that include:
Support code changes and policies that prioritize the safety & protection of residents and property values.
Require setbacks from dwellings of 1000’ or more for all wireless facility types.
Require notice to citizens at time of application and at approval for all wireless facility types.
Require a formal objection & comment process for all facility types, with a preference for public hearings.
Require independent or county conducted RF/EMF testing of cumulative levels both before permit is approved, before final approval to operate, and an annual random (unannounced) test to verify continued compliance with FCC radiation limits.
Please comment to the county.
Those wishing to comment should can do so at the weekly Board of County Commissioner meetings. If unable to attend, mailed or emailed comments may be sent by email to the Commissioners here. Making a verbal comment followed by an email comment of your statement is most effective.