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Does the school district get any money for the cell tower at Whitman Middle School?

Issue:That is the question posed by a reader who wondered about the financial benefit for having the tower next to Whitman's athletic field.

Status:The 128-foot-tall cell tower at Whitman was erected in 2007, said John Mack, director of business services at the school district. Mack said the antenna is leased by Crown Castle, which purchased the lease rights from T-Mobile.

'The district currently receives $29,171 in an annual rental payment,' Mack said. 'The rental agreement increases 25 percent every five years.'

The district also received a free storage garage as part of the agreement for the tower. It is at the back end of the cell tower equipment building.

In addition, Mack said, Crown Castle reimburses the district for the electricity.

Mack said the district also has a T-Mobile wireless antenna on the roof of Washington Elementary.

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