Washington’s state trust lands are keeping you in touch

tower maintenance
He’s not putting up holiday lights! Maintenance duties are year-round at communications sites like this one on Grass Mountain, a parcel of state trust land in King County that DNR leases to private companies for their microwave and other communication services. Photo: Steve Diamond/NW Tower Eng. Inc.

Private companies and public agencies lease more than 100 communication sites on DNR-managed state trust lands across Washington state. Located atop mountains and other high-elevation sites these communication facilities house radio, telephone, cellular, microwave and other electronic wireless systems that deliver vital communication services to residents, businesses and governments. From cell phone calls to emergency dispatches, these sites are part of our state’s communications backbone.

In fiscal year 2015, DNR communication site leases produced nearly $4.5 million for distribution to public schools and other trust land beneficiaries. In all, state trust lands generated more than $200 million last year to support K-12 public school construction, universities, and a host of services in many counties.