A few days ago, I drove from route 9, turned into Lane’s Gate, drove past the recycling center and back to Route 9 without ever having the cell call I was on fail or drop. I use Verizon.

Apparently, there is an existing monopole at Grey Rock Road and Route 301. It supports equipment from Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint-Nextel, and AT&T. Yes, AT&T.

As of July 9, 2012, Verizon had an application in front of our Zoning Board of Appeals for significant equipment upgrades to bring their service up to the latest generation available. I am guessing that they were successful in their efforts. Here is the actual Zoning Board document.

My question is if Verizon can upgrade their existing equipment on a nearby monopole, then why can’t AT&T? What will happen when T-Mobile wants their own pole? And then Sprint?

Does the Telecommunications Act of 1996 provide license and free rein for that kind of saturation? I don’t think so. The Act of 1996, in spirit, was to prevent large monopoly-like carriers from cutting-out their competition. The Act of 1996 actually mandates that carriers share existing wires and towers for the benefit of all competitors. Could it be that AT&T and Verizon are not playing well together in the sandbox?

Does Philipstown have to roll over because, as Mr. Xavier reminded everyone at the recent Town Hall meeting, Homeland Towers “can go to a private property owner. There are other opportunities here. There’s going to be a tower there, somewhere in that area”?

Seth Dinitz

Behind The Story

Type: Opinion

Opinion: Advocates for ideas and draws conclusions based on the author/producer’s interpretation of facts and data.

This piece is by a contributor to The Current who is not on staff. Typically this is because it is a letter to the editor or a guest column.