Town Attorney Mike Magguilli later reprimanded Cusack when he suggested the planning board was under public pressure to deny the site plan and protests might have swayed their decision.
"Mr. Cusack's statements about his feelings are totally out of order," Magguilli said.
He said the "attack" on the board was "unprofessional."
"We looked at the law and the board is choosing to look a different way,"
O'Rourke said of the planning board's decision. "No one has pressured me. I'm my own man."
Cusack also criticized Tom Nardacci, a member on the planning board, for making comments to the media about the tower not fitting with the area's historical character.
Nardacci said he has only considered town law and regulations in his decision.
"Consistent with public statements I have made over the past few months, and under no pretext, I am voting 'no" on this matter because a cell phone tower is out of character with the surrounding neighborhood. Loudonville is a well-documented historically significant area, listed on the National Register of Historic Places," said Nardacci. "To my knowledge, commercial/industrial structures of this nature are non-existent on private property in this area. The town's land use law clearly states that this board must consider the character of the neighborhood. In my opinion, a cell phone tower is inconsistent and should not be permitted."
Planning board member Peter Gannon said he was not comfortable permitting the tower due to provisions in the zoning code preventing an impact on adjacent land and promoting harmony between a structure and the surrounding community.
"I'm still stuck with the issues," Gannon said.
Following Gannon's comments, Cusack told the board that the bell tower, without the cell function, is a permitted use, and he asked Gannon to reconcile his comments, at which point O'Rourke stopped the conversation.