Ripon Unified is officially opposing a proposal San Joaquin County is considering to allow a 134-foot cell tower to be erected near Colony Oak School on Murphy Road.
“We would prefer not to have any more distractions that take away from educating students,” District Superintendent Ziggy Robeson said of the board’s position on the cell tower.
Ripon Unified leaders spent two years working with a number of concerned parents who believe a cell tower that was in the middle of the Weston Elementary school campus for roughly 15 years may have been responsible for triggering cancer in several children due to electromagnetic waves.
Experts hired by the Ripon Unified concluded the tower’s electromagnetic waves were well within federal guidelines. An expert retained by several parents disputed that conclusion. The constant anxiety the situation was creating was ended when Sprint agreed to remove the tower.
That tower was more than half the height of the one proposed near Colony School. It also had significantly less transmitters than the one the county planning department is processing.
The district has asked the county to consider a site elsewhere that is away from the school.
A number of parents and community members submitted letters by the April 15 deadline protesting the location for the proposed cell tower.
The district has received 60 letters against the tower as well.
One thing is clear, if the tower is approved it is likely to create a black-eye for the primary cell service user and ongoing issues for the county and school district from a number of Ripon residents.
That’s based on the intensity of the opposition to the cell tower remaining at Weston School. It ended up drawing in elected state officials.
That tower was relocated less than a mile away on property near Jack Tone Road and Harvest Drive.
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