Representatives from CBS Radio appeared before the Cinnaminson Township Committee to discuss an auxiliary antenna the company is proposing to put up at 1267 North Church Street in Moorestown. The antenna would technically be located in an industrial area in Moorestown, but it would be up against a residential area in Cinnaminson.
Because it would be located in Moorestown, the company would need approval for a use variance from that municipality. It will make a presentation before the Moorestown Zoning Board on Monday night, Feb. 18.
The group appeared before the Cinnaminson Township Committee this week at the request of Cinnaminson Mayor Anthony Minniti.
Company representatives explained that the auxiliary antenna would serve as a backup for an existing radio tower, to be activated only when the original tower wasn’t in service. They also said it was not their intention to build another radio tower in that spot. The use variance they are applying for through Moorestown would only permit the construction of the antenna. Any further changes would require another application in Moorestown.
The antenna would be smaller than the radio tower, and would need to use more energy than the existing tower. CBS representatives promised the antenna would not reach the same coverage area the existing tower serves, but residents were concerned with the impact adding the tower would have.
Residents who showed up at Monday’s meeting expressed concern that the current tower gives off too much radiation as it is. Residents claim radiation given off by the tower, which predates the homes in the area, has caused Cancer among some residents in the area. They asked representatives if they would be willing to conduct testing in the area, to which they were told the company was not required to conduct testing.
Representatives did assure residents the antenna met standards set forth by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and that they would have to stand within 12 feet of the antenna for any harm to be done. Homes are well outside the 12-foot range, the representatives said.
“We were not satisfied by their presentation,” said Stephen Johnston, a 10-year resident of Concord Drive.
He and his wife, Kathleen, were among the residents who pointed to years of complaints about the radio tower that have gone unanswered.
“We’ve had a lot of people in our area that have died of Cancer that had no history of Cancer in the family,” Kathleen Johnston said.
“We will work with the families to see what we can do for them,” said Joanne Calabria, a spokeswoman for CBS, adding “I don’t think there are any signs that there is a health issue.”
Another information session will be held on the issue on Tuesday, Feb. 11, at The Venue at Lenola in Moorestown, 7 p.m.
Anyone with further questions about the antenna or the existing tower can also direct questions to WPHTSupport@cbsradio.com. A representative will respond to emails in a timely manner, according to CBS representatives.