Zoning Officer Defends Mayor On Cell Tower Issue

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I serve as the Zoning Officer and Construction Official for the Borough of Carteret and have worked in the Borough for 40 years and for the borough of Carteret for 20 years under three different administrations. While I have had a good relationship with all the Mayors I’ve worked for none has been a stronger working relationship than with Mayor Dan Reiman.

His commitment to Carteret, its residents, charities, and businesses has been unparalleled. In my position I review every zoning application and make the determination of permitted uses. In some instances permitted uses require site plan approval from the planning board. On issues dealing with use or bulk variances an application would be referred over to the zoning board of adjustment for review and consideration.

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In his letter to the editor, Damian Cioni suggests that he has permits, approvals, variances and waivers to construct a 150ft tower in the backyard of a residential property. Mr. Cioni has never met with the Borough of Carteret. He has never filed any application for review, for use, for a variance, construction permit or site plan approval for the construction of anything let alone a 150ft cell tower. The property in question is in a R-25 residential zone, not a commercial or industrial zone where a tower may be permitted with certain variances.

In my experience, neighboring property owners and Carteret resident in general would have been up in arms if an application to construct a 150ft cell tower, in a residential area was approved by the zoning board. The zoning law allows for construction of up to 30ft in height for home and less than 20ft in height for accessory structures in this zone. While some would like to suggest it could have and would have been built, land use and zoning laws do not now and have never allowed for this type of use in a residential zone.

In 2006 the borough changed the zoning for cell towers to ensure that they are built on borough property in permitted zones so that all the residents and taxpayers benefit. Can you imagine if every church, school, club or nonprofit attempted to construct a cell tower in the mostly residential areas that they are located? This is why we have zoning laws and delineation between residential, industrial and commercial.

A. Neibert
Construction Code Official /Zoning Officer
Borough of Carteret


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