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Contact: Roy Zipp, (360) 854-7313
FONSI Signed and Special Use Permit Issued to WeavTel
North Cascades National Park Complex has signed a Finding of No Significant Impact and issued WeavTel a Special Use Permit for the installation and maintenance of public telecommunications equipment on public lands in Stehekin, WA, which is within Lake Chelan National Recreation Area. The National Park Service (NPS) is issuing the permit to WeavTel as mandated by order of the U.S. District Court of Eastern Washington. This action complies with the Universal Service provisions of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and associated regulatory guidance from the federal executive branch.
This Special Use Permit will allow WeavTel to install, maintain and operate a wireless telecommunications system. Should the wireless system be determined ineffective for its designed purpose, the NPS agrees to issue a Special Use Permit to allow the burying of fiber optic cable on lands administered by NPS as necessary to establish reliable telecommunications where wireless telecommunications are not feasible.
In response to a request from the community to establish a public phone system in Stehekin, WA, the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission sought a company to provide telephone service to the Stehekin Valley. WeavTel submitted a proposal to provide this service and in 2003 requested a permit from the National Park Service for installation of equipment which included placement of fiber optic cable on public and private land. WeavTel submitted a substantially revised proposal in 2006, which included partial wireless infrastructure so as to avoid crossing private property. North Cascades National Park responded with Environmental Assessments to both proposals.
Finally, in response to public comments to use the best available technology, to reduce environmental impact and to avoid issues of crossing private land, the NPS requested WeavTel consider design of an all-wireless system. As a result, WeavTel submitted a revised proposal in August 2007 to install and maintain an all-wireless telecommunication system.
For more detailed information, please read the entire Finding of No Significant Impact and associated documents at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?parkId=327&projectId=18746.