6 Jan 2011

Council fined $15,000 for blocking cell phone tower

6:22 am on 6 January 2011

Wanganui District Council has been fined $15,000 for trying to block a cell phone tower that cut into one of the city's best views.

The council says it accepts the decision, but will try to control where towers can go in the future.

Vodafone told the Environment Court it has been trying to erect a new mobile phone tower on St Johns Hill for six years and the council had been actively blocking it for nine months.

The court found the council acted illegally.

Mayor Annette Main says the decision is fair because council staff overstepped the mark by trying to stop the company from doing something it was legally allowed to.

But she says the district plan is being rewritten and she plans to look at what other cities have done to protect important vistas.