GARDEN CITY PARK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Suffolk County has adopted a law against double utility poles prompting homeowners in Nassau County to call for similar legislation.
Double poles are created when a utility installs a new pole to replace a damaged one and fails to take down the old pole.
1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports
Nassau County resident Bridget Ford said she had a new utility pole put up in front of her Garden City Park house and then spent nearly a year battling to get the old one down.
“It was a constant ordeal,” Ford said. “I called one company and they said they’re not responsible, they said they’re renting the pole. Then I’d call another company and they said it’s not their responsibility. It went on and on and on. Nobody would take responsibility.”
Under Suffolk County’s law, which was passed last month, a utility has 60 days to remove cables and fixtures from double poles or face a fine of $1,000 per pole, per month. The utility then has 30 days to remove the old pole or face a fine of $1,000 per month, per pole.
Legislator Jay Schneiderman, who sponsored the bill, believes the hefty penalties will prompt utilities to move quicker when it comes to taking down double poles.
“Utilities have abandoned these poles because there has been no financial consequence for leaving them in place,” Schneiderman said. “Now it will be in their business interests to quickly remove these poles and relieve our communities of this visual blight.”
Ford and others in her neighborhood are hoping Nassau County will implement a similar plan.
“It was an eyesore,” Ford said. “We pay big taxes and you’d like at least to have something respectable outside your front door. My neighbor down the road has a double pole and it’s there for many, many years.”