The town of Union will hold two public hearings Thursday, May 9, at 6 p.m. regarding an application for a cell tower on Mt. Pleasant Road.

Bay Communications has applied to construct a wireless telecommunications facility at 48 Mt. Pleasant Road.

Code Enforcement Officer Barry Norris said he received the official application proposal April 25. Residents who live within 500 feet of the proposed site received direct notification of the public hearings in the mail April 29.

The proposed elevation of the tower is 190 feet and, if approved, the site will be 60,000 square feet. The site is located atop a knoll behind Wottons Mill Road and Mt. Pleasant Road, just off a commonly used snowmobile trail.

Residents opposing the placement of the tower have begun circulating a petition.

"The visual impact will be profound and impossible to screen," states the petition Sharon Osborne is gathering signatures on.

"It was the furthest thing from my mind when I purchased here," said Theresa "Tree" Roth, who lives on Wottons Mill Road. Roth and Osborne expressed their frustration at the process by which residents were notified of the proposed telecommunications tower.

On March 28, approximately 20 people including Union Planning Board members along with Norris and representatives of Bay Communications conducted a site walk.

"I ran around the day before to distribute notices to let people know about the walk," said Osborne.

Following the site walk, Osborne said the planning board went into its regularly scheduled meeting regarding the possible application for the tower, however no public comment was taken, as is protocol.

Osborne and Roth are not only concerned about the visual affects the tower will have on the area's natural landscape, how it will affect their property value as well as any health implications are on their minds as well.

"I bought here for the equity," said Osborne, who now is not certain how the proposed cell tower will affect her retirement.

The public hearings will be held in the town office meeting room on the lower level.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or by email at bbirmingham@courierpublicationsllc.com.