Daniel, SAA Class of 2018
In August 2013, Sacramento Adventist Academy was approached by Verizon Wireless with an offer potentially generating more than $1,000,000 over a span of 25 years. Their proposal was for SAA to lease part of campus for the construction of a cell tower. Even more revenue may be brought in if other companies decide to use the tower. The proceeds will fund tuition assistance and campus improvements, specifically new lighting for the football field. Completed in October 2016, this 3 year project had to be passed by committee after committee and inspection after inspection. Now the 80 ft. cell tower, behind the Elementary and campus maintenance shops, can be seen (if looked for) among the eucalyptus trees.
It first went through SAA’s school board, which unanimously voted in support recognizing the many benefits versus the few cons. Soon after a community meeting was held, giving opportunity to all the parents and neighbors to voice any concerns or suggestions. Originally the tower was going to be beside the field acting as a light post, but to satisfy the majority of those at the community meeting, the tower was placed in the back dressed as a tree, where it would not disturb the view. In 2016 the County of Sacramento held a meeting for the Carmichael community. Unanimously approved with no known risks, construction began.
There are cell towers all around us, some people even consider them to be essential, so when SAA was approached they took advantage of this opportunity. Greg Fayard, the Board Chair at the time put it this way, “A tower was going to go in the area somewhere, so the school elected to take advantage of the revenue.” Upfront the school received $20,000 (much more than its monthly income) and additionally benefited from some pro bono legal work that Greg Fayard happily provided.
“The cell tower, in my opinion, has now simply become part of the campus; largely out sight, and out of mind, but generating much needed revenue to improve SAA’s dynamic program.” – Greg Fayard