Farragut’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen — after repeatedly communicating to its citizens it has no authority or control over 5G implementation — is looking to state and federal officials to potentially intervene concerning health questions.
BOMA unanimously passed a two-page resolution during its regular Thursday meeting May 14, calling on the Federal Communications Commission and state legislators “to take action to halt the deployment of 5G wireless facilities within the rights of way of our community until further study has been conducted to ensure the health of the public will not be adversely impacted by long-term exposure to the radio frequency emissions of this facilities,” according to a report submitted by Town administrator David Smoak.
“A resolution only serves to express policy or opinions in a non-binding manner,” Vice Mayor Louise Povlin stated in a post addressing the resolution two days later on Nextdoor.com.
“As a local government, we do not have jurisdiction to prevent the implementation of 5G,” she added.
“This is expressly stated in state and federal laws, both of which preempt our ability to prevent the implementation of 5G in our right-of-ways,” she added. “We, as a Town, are still required to abide by both state and federal laws. The residents in Stonecrest, Farragut View, Woodland Trace and Sweet Briar have expressed concerns about the fact that the FCC has not updated its radio frequency emissions standards since 1996.
“This resolution requests that it would be prudent, given that the implementation of 5G requires many more poles in close proximity to each other and to the residents in residential neighborhoods.”
As for the courts, “Currently, there is lawsuit in the Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit that is requesting the same review,” she stated. “I believe our community, at least, deserves assurances that this technology is safe and operating at radiation levels as low as reasonable achievable.”
The resolution was crafted by Town attorney Tom Hale, who began working on it after Farragut resident Mike Mitchell submitted his own to the Board last month.
However, at that time, Hale told the Board the submitted resolution could not be officially considered, as its information “could not be verified,” but offered to craft one that could be considered by the Board.
(Link to resolution is online at farragutpress Facebook page)
Mayor Ron Williams and Povlin requested slight amendments last week, which Hale rewrote and incorporated into the resolution after a short recess.
The Board approved the Grigsby Chapel Road pedestrian crossing improvement contract with Stansell Electric Co. Inc. for $40,120 and approved a professional services agreement with Civil & Environmental Consultants for additional services regarding future stormwater pipe repairs and rehabilitation.