OTTAWA - The following statement was released by Claude Dauphin, President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) regarding changes to Canada's Antenna Siting Policy announced today by Industry Minister James Moore:
"The changes to Canada's Antenna Siting Policy announced by the federal government today are good news for our cities and communities.
We all know that demand for wireless communications is rising, requiring more antenna systems to be built in or near Canadian communities. But we have to make sure that when that happens, it is done in a way that respects the needs of our communities. That is why FCM has been calling on the federal government to close a major loophole that permitted wireless companies to build antenna towers under 15 metres without notifying or consulting affected communities. The changes announced today respond directly to our call.
The antenna protocol template launched by FCM and the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) last year went beyond the requirements of Industry Canada's existing regulations to establish a more extensive consultation between wireless companies and affected communities on all towers to be built, regardless of height. This has greatly improved the antenna siting process in many communities. The changes announced by the federal government today are consistent with that approach.
We commend the government on its decision to update Canada's Antenna Tower Siting Policy, and for expanding the role of municipalities and the public in providing meaningful input on the siting of antenna towers in our cities and communities. This provides further proof of what we can accomplish when all orders of government and the private sector work together as partners to meet the needs of our communities."