© 2007 Updated: 03/12/07

ANTENNA TOWER UPDATE: June 12, 2008

Senator Allard visits Supertower on Lookout Mountain

On May 29, television executives representing Denver channels 4, 7, 9, and 20 guided U.S. Senator Wayne Allard through the new DTV “supertower” facility. Allard was pleased with the result of federal legislation he and U.S. Senator Ken Salazar sponsored to preempt local land-use control (without a Congressional vote) on December 9, 2006. The federal preemption caused District Court Judge Jackson to dismiss the suit brought by the City of Golden, CARE, and many individuals representing 50,000 citizens effected by the electromagnetic radiation within a five-mile radius. Hoping the industry would abide by stipulations in the 2003 proposal, JeffCo Commissioners then approved the remand for “Lake Cedar Group, LLC” on March 12, 2007.

LCG engineer David Layne said, “We are working closely with the county on every aspect of this project. Signals are directional to the east. We are taking down four towers some time after analog broadcast ends in February, 2009.” He said LCG intends to be a good neighbor and will help identify and repair RF interference issues. The proposed agreement with JeffCo limits that assistance to one year, or until February, 2010.

Supertower on Lookout Mountain Built over Local Objections

The male executives representing stations owned by Westinghouse, McGraw Hill and Gannett Corporations and LCG personnel continued to present the preemption “script,” which apparently convinced Salazar and Allard of the benefits for 12% of viewers who receive television signals free over-the-air. The 88% using cable or satellite services are not effected by the switch from analog to digital. Allard sees no need to alter the legislation that permits anyone with an FCC permit for DTV to operate on “Lookout Mountain.”

Citizens believe the change from broadcasting analog (on low-altitude land zoned “residential”) to digital is a good opportunity to broadcast DTV from appropriately-zoned, alternative higher sites that cause no harm to humans and provide equal coverage of the Denver metro area. The industry prefers the convenience of Lookout Mountain (15 minutes from TV studios) and control the public image of all elected politicians. For industry information, see www.HDTVcolorado.com The citizens website is www.HDTVhonestly.com

Media Executives and Senator Allard Admire the Supertower

Other media companies exploit preemption

The U.S. Senator rejected a request to meet with citizen representatives who are concerned about proliferation in their residential area by other broadcasters. Tribune Corporation is expanding use of the KWGN-Channel 2 tower immediately east of historic Buffalo Bill’s Grave buried in 1917. Fox 31 could also exploit the legislation and lease space on its tower to Jefferson County for $1 per year.

KRMA-Channel 6 to Mount Morrison

The “Public Interest Communications” (KRMA, a PBS affiliate) antenna tower proposal was approved by County Commissioners in 2003. After CARE, Genesee Foundation and individuals won in District Court and the Colorado Court of Appeals, the Colorado Supreme Court remanded it back to JeffCo. On April 1, 2008, all three JeffCo Commissioners approved the tower, which could provide an alternative to Lookout Mountain for 6 DTV and 10 FM radio station antennas. The existing KRMA-Channel 6 tower, which causes severe interference at the historic Boettcher Mansion and Lookout Nature Center, will be removed. KRMA can rent space on the new tower above Red Rocks Park. Some Genesee residents are appealing.

Senator Allard Visits the Supertower he Pushed through Congress

Photo: U.S. Senator Allard tours the Supertower with Denver TV executives.

—Carole Lomond

For more information, see Antenna Tower Update.