Technology

The county in court

The county government — or, more specifically, attorneys for the school board and supervisors whose fees are paid by government liability insurance policies — has been spending more than the usual amount of time in circuit court these last few past months.
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Going green? You should probably walk there.

By
Jan. 22
Via Pixabay

Beneath the Keystone XL debate and our current oil glut, a low-impact, forgotten carbon fuel remains buried. In us.
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Lawmakers seek to restrict drones

Richmond lawmakers consider regulation of drones this session.

Five bills before the General Assembly would restrict the use of drones in Virginia, including one that would let localities prohibit even hobbyists from flying small unmanned aircraft.
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School board declines cell tower lease

Detail from an AT&T mockup, based on a balloon test, of what the planned Boston tower would look like from 400 feet away.

By a vote of 3-2, the Rappahannock County School Board Tuesday night (Jan. 13) voted against entering a controversial lease agreement with Community Wireless Structures (CWS), the Arlington company which had offered to construct a monopole for prospective mobile carriers on high school property.
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School board declines cell tower lease

Detail from an AT&T mockup, based on a balloon test, of what the planned Boston tower would look like from 400 feet away.

Rappahannock County School Board votes against entering a controversial lease agreement with Community Wireless Structures, the Arlington company which had offered to construct a monopole for prospective mobile carriers on high school property.
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School Board pressed on cell details

VFOIA-8W

A Sperryville resident files a civil action (to be heard Jan. 12) to force the county school board to respond to a Virginia Freedom of Information Act request for all its cell tower-related communications. Update: The school board asks for 7 more days and $400.
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Letter: Inquiring minds have a legal right to know

By
Jan. 8

A couple of years ago when the original proposal for a cell tower at Rappahannock County High School was first mentioned, I took to the internet to find out how other communities have dealt with similar proposals. Without fail, these situations have been “controversial.” The cellular industry insists that the emissions from the towers...
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Letter: School cell tower concern

I am very concerned about the Rappahannock County Public Schools’ plans to lease property for a communications tower and cannot find information anywhere. There is nothing on the school’s website about this and I surely do not see anything on the county’s website. My concerns extend beyond the issue of possible radiation. Yes, I...
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Cable installers cut CenturyLink phone lines — again

By
Jan. 1
r_celltower-25webfront

For the second time in two weeks, a Sprint contractor inadvertently cuts an underground phone line, causing service disruption to residents and businesses in the Flint Hill and Huntley area for nearly 24 hours.
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Letter: Cell towers: Too hot for school

I am writing to express my opposition to locating a cell phone tower at the high school. I am not opposed to having cell towers in our county, but I believe placing a tower at a school presents too many potential health risks to a large portion of our population, including many children. My...
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Football praised, cell tower decried, board delays deciding

By
Dec. 11, 2014

Rappahannock County Public Schools got an excellent turnout for football Tuesday night — which delayed an excellent turnout for (or actually, against) cell towers on school property.
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Letter: Cell phones and lifelines

The fuss over views and possible health hazards of cell towers seems small and petty when the power is out, the phones are dead and your house is on fire — no phone, no power, zero temperatures. (The view is very grim.) A short time ago, a man working with a bladed weed whacker...
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Letter: Reliable data, please

While we cannot say with certainty that cell phone service would have changed the outcome of the recent fatal incident in Sperryville, we can show a logical argument in favor of wider cell phone service providing a public good.   I would ask the opponents of cell phone service to present their logical argument...
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Company wants to build, lease cell tower at high school, other sites

By
July 17, 2014
RN_071714_A001

In a 30-minute informational meeting Tuesday night (July 15) attended by fewer than 10 people, the Rappahannock County School Board heard a presentation outlining Community Wireless Structure’s proposal to place a monopole cell phone tower on high school property.
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Letter: ‘Let the towers rise!’

Today I did some research as to wifi availability across the globe: South Korea, Japan, Switzerland, Latvia, Netherlands, Czech Republic and Belgium are ahead of the United States. Finland and the United Kingdom trail the U.S. in the top 10. Citizens of Albania, Ukraine and Estonia have superior Internet service than the residents of Rappahannock County. Here we...
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Photos: Cell servicing

Photo by Matt Wingfield

Union First will issue new cards after Target, Neiman Marcus breaches

Union First Market Bank has merged with StellarOne. Photo by Jan Clatterbuck

Union First Market Bankshares Corporation this week announced that it will reissue customer credit and debit cards impacted by recent data breaches at Target and Neiman Marcus.
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Letter: The wireless boon is bogus

Tim Rowland’s recent article, “Rural broadband may be environmental boon” seemed to be industry propaganda, portraying government-imposed broadband as the answer to all our needs. (Isn’t 3D printing your dream?) Likewise, it was portrayed as being “clean,” but any real research shows this is not true. A) This country is being taken...
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Nuclear authority generates controversy

By
April 18, 2013

Virginia is creating a new agency to support development of nuclear power – a move that has upset environmentalists and open-government advocates, because the entity won’t have to comply with the state’s Freedom of Information Act and other laws.
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Technology on the farm now fits in the palm of your hand

Agriculture commissioner Matthew Lohr writes about how social media and technology can help farmers and others to stay connected with the land.
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County’s connect-inactivity

By
Oct. 18, 2012
RNThisWeekNew

It’s no secret that the scenic nature of Rappahannock County is one of its defining characteristics, not to mention its biggest draw. It's also why it's sometimes impossible to make a phone call.
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The Rapp for March 8

By
March 8, 2012
r_theRappMiddle-08webfront

Civil War painterly photos at Middle Street and a benefit art show in Madison; update on AT&T cell towers and Piedmont Broadband plans; the annual county cleanup is underway; Angus news around the county.
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Can you hear me now?

r_celltower-25webfront

A brief update on AT&T's cell tower construction plans.
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Accelerate Virginia broadband mapping project

By
Aug. 18, 2011

In an effort to expand high-speed Internet access across the state, Rappahannock County is working with Virginia Tech’s eCorridors program on Accelerate Virginia, a new broadband mapping project. One small action, one big difference By sparing just a few minutes of your time to take the Accelerate Virginia speed test, you will help encourage...
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High school cell monopole OK’d by supervisors

By
March 10, 2011
r_cell-10webfront

In a four-to-one vote Monday night, the Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors cleared the way for AT&T to construct a 199-foot cell tower behind Rappahannock High School in accordance with a revised plan meant to address concerns about the pole’s proximity to school buildings.
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Planners OK last two poles

By
Feb. 24, 2011
r_celltower-25webfront

After a final balloon test this weekend, the cell phone tower permit process moves into the hands of county supervisors March 7. The County Planning Commission voted last Wednesday night (Feb. 16) to recommend approval of the last two facilities in AT&T’s five-project plan to offer coverage to an estimated 45 percent of county...
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Up in the Hollow: Schools and cell towers — git ‘er . . . educated

By
Feb. 17, 2011
r_celltower-25webfront

The Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors, at the behest of AT&T, will vote at its March meeting on the tabled motion to place a cell tower at the Rappahannock High School. In a surprise move, according to the Rappahannock News, “an alternate site for the proposed 199-foot monopole at the high school had been...
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Planners approve last two AT&T cell projects

By
Feb. 16, 2011
r_celltower-25webfront

NOTE: The updated version of this report is here. The Rappahannock County Planning Commission voted Wednesday night to recommend approval of the last two of AT&T’s five-project plan to provide cell coverage to an estimated 45 percent of county residents by building three new monopoles and extending two existing Sprint poles. The vote was...
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Sperryville monopole OK’d; AT&T’s school site adjusted and delayed

By
Feb. 10, 2011
r_celltower-25webfront

Meeting before a partisan crowd of about 40 at the high school auditorium, the Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors took two unanimous actions Monday night in the matter of two of AT&T’s five proposed cellular installations. One was unanticipated, the other clearly unwanted by those partisans.
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Letter: Our children’s brains

r_celltower-25webfront

I believe I speak for many people in this county, especially parents of children in the public schools. Given both the horrible aesthetic impact of a nearly 200-foot tower on U.S. 211 towering up behind the school, and a potential long-term health hazard of low-energy radio waves on the brains of children, I urge...
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Planners OK two more cell towers

By
Jan. 27, 2011
Rappahannock News Staff Photo/Roger Piantadosi

The county’s board of supervisors will consider at its next meeting on Feb. 7 AT&T’s applications to build two more 199-foot cellular-service monopoles in the county. Both were recommended for approval by county planners last week.
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Letter: Tower at school — give it an F

letters

As a parent with young children about to enter Rappahannock schools, I’m deeply concerned that our planning commission has approved the proposed 199-foot cell tower less than 100 feet from the high school. It is also very troubling that the school board would agree to lease its land to AT&T to build a tower...
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Letter: ‘Frustrating’ cell tower meeting

letters

The Jan. 17 Rappahannock County Planning Commission meeting was exceedingly frustrating to witness. We recognize that outcomes will not always be in our favor. We do, however, expect that the process will be fair and thorough; both of which we feel were lacking during this meeting. First, the commission received new information from AT&T...
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Letter: And the reason for 200-foot towers is . . . ?

letters

When something is being shoved down my throat I want to know why. I hear some say we will get broadband Internet with AT&T’s cell tower plan. I hear others say cell phone service. Others say it will help our volunteer fire and rescue teams. But I don’t hear specifics. I see maps that...
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Planners OK two more AT&T monopoles

By
Jan. 20, 2011

After a public hearing at the high school attended by some 50 citizens Wednesday night, the Rappahannock County Planning Commission voted to recommend approval to the supervisors for two more cell tower proposals by AT&T. Among those in attendance, more than two dozen citizens took their three minutes apiece to speak about AT&T’s plans...
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40+ attend cell meeting

By
Jan. 20, 2011
r_cell-20webfront

Rappahannock citizens concerned about AT&T’s application to erect two more 199-foot cell phone towers in the county attended an “informational” meeting on Monday to voice their concerns and hear their options. The meeting sponsored by the Rappahannock League for Environmental Protection (RLEP), the Piedmont Environmental Council (PEC) and private citizens, came in the waning...
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Up in the Hollow: Let’s put this call on hold

By
Jan. 20, 2011
Photo/fake by Roger Piantadosi for the Rappahannock News

Big Brother is on the loose. When Congress passed the Communications Act of 1996, a piece of legislation written by and for the telecommunications industry, which put $40 million into its lobbying effort (not including campaign donations), the people of America were stripped of some very basic rights. Ten years ago, when Sprint made...
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Photos: Sperryville, high school cell tower balloon tests

By
Jan. 13, 2011
Photo taken during Saturday’s balloon test; the balloon, just visible at the tip of the arrow, indicates the top of the proposed 199-foot monopole off Woodward Road in Sperryville. Staff Photo/Roger Piantadosi.

Since the Rappahannock County Board of Supervisors last week approved the first, in Boston, of five proposed AT&T cell service monopoles, there’s been much talk about cell towers’ impact on the county’s long-protected scenic values and safe roads — and much of that can be found in this week’s edition. (Meanwhile, the county planning...
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Letter: Nothing scenic about cell towers

r_celltower-25webfront

In 1962, forward-thinking leaders in Rappahannock County adopted a zoning ordinance that would help protect the scenic and rural aspects of this county. Landowners throughout the county voluntarily down-zoned their properties to protect the county from being suburbanized. Since then, private landowners have voluntarily protected more than 28,500 acres of land through voluntary conservation...
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Letter: A dim view of cell tower

r_celltower-25webfront

With much appreciation for the Planning Commission, the Board of Supervisors and the tremendous responsibilities of both groups, I respectfully disagree with their collective decision to approve the first installation of AT&T’s proposed cell tower infrastructure. My basis is simple: installing 199-foot cell towers (placing 12 panel antennas and related ground equipment located within...
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