CAMANCHE — Camanche City Council considered a proposed lease agreement with Wapsi Wireless to provide the placement of a mono-pole tower on city property Tuesday.

Andy Anderson of Iowa Wireless represented Wapsi Wireless at the meeting, presenting the proposed agreement to the board and answering any questions. City Administrator Tom Roth pointed out that the contract lists a monthly rent of $400 instead of the $500 previously discussed. This proposal also listed a yearly two-percent increase, instead of the previously discussed three percent. Roth said he felt this would be the biggest issue of discussion. He also stated that another area of renting space for a mono-pole tower would reach $750 a month.

“We were initially given a number, their proposal of $500 and we declined to take action on that, indicated that we thought the property’s worth more and then they come back with a proposed lease that is $400 a month and they drop the renewal percentages for the future. So at what point is it not worth bothering with a lease. And that’s something you have to take into consideration. If we’re not getting adequate rent to really help the city pay their bills, is it really worth the effort at all if there are people in the neighborhood who didn’t want this structure to be erected in the first place,” City Attorney Thomas Lonergan said.

Anderson said when the original offer was made with the $500 a month rent and the yearly three percent escalator, it was with the idea that any revenue made by adding a co-locator would be received by Wapsi Wireless. When the council asked to take the revenue from a co-locator, Wapsi Wireless reduced these amounts. Anderson said the tower would handle at least three providers so the city could receive additional rent from them.

“Because we are building a facility on the grounds, the standard practice of Iowa, including Clinton County is that the tower is assessed. I checked around. We built a similar tower in DeWitt and the tax revenue from that is approximately $1,700 a year, which would be additional revenue over and above our rent,” said Anderson.

Anderson said they are anxious to have a decision as soon as possible. He said he was prepared to reinstate the originally discussed figures. He said he feels it is an equitable offer for both parties.

The concern of some council members is that nothing would guarantee that other providers would lease space on the tower. Anderson said he has seen many multi-provider towers.

Lonergan proposed a counter offer that listed the rent at $700 a month. Then for each provider Wapsi Wireless gets to join onto the tower, $100 would be taken off of the rent. He said this would encourage Wapsi Wireless to look for co-locators and would provide more revenue for the city.

Anderson asked that if he presented this counter offer to Wapsi Wireless, the board approved a resolution to authorize the mayor to make the agreement with those terms. The council approved this course of action.

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