Mayor seeks to pass noise ordinance

By LEA RIZZO, Daily Mountain Eagle
Posted 10/20/17

DORA — Mayor Randy Stephens introduced a noise ordinance to the Dora City Council at last week’s council meeting, in an effort to “reduce noise that bothers other people.”

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Mayor seeks to pass noise ordinance


DORA — Mayor Randy Stephens introduced a noise ordinance to the Dora City Council at last week’s council meeting, in an effort to “reduce noise that bothers other people.”

Stephens expects the council members will vote on it at next week’s council meeting, set for Thursday. The entirety of the proposed ordinance is posted in the Dora City Hall lobby for city residents to read.

The proposed ordinance aims “to protect, preserve and promote the health, safety, welfare, and peace and quiet for the citizens of Dora through the reduction, control and prevention of excessive sound or other noise,” the document states. “It is the intent of this ordinance to establish standards that will eliminate and reduce unnecessary and excessive community sounds or other unreasonable noises which are physically harmful and otherwise detrimental to individuals and the community in the enjoyment of life, property and conduct of business.”

Stephens previously tried to introduce a noise ordinance in 2015. However, when it came up for a council vote in January 2016, the motion of approval died for lack of a second and such an ordinance wasn’t revisited until the Oct. 12 council meeting.

This new ordinance lays out different acts that are considered “loud, disturbing noise,” which includes: horns; radios or shouting and singing in the streets, particularly between the hours of 11 p.m. and 7 a.m.; vehicles out of repair, rattling, grinding, etc.; blowing steam whistles; and use of loud speakers or amplifiers, among other things. Creating noises considered loud and disturbing is prohibited.

However, the ordinance does state that it is not applicable to sporting or athletic exhibitions or entertainments. It also doesn’t apply to public business, such as “excavations or repairs of bridges, streets or highways by or on behalf of the city, public utility or the state during the nighttime.”

Section 8 of the proposed ordinance declares it a “nuisance and unlawful to operate or play any radio, musical instrument or similar device,” whether in a vehicle or by a pedestrian, loud enough for any person other than the operator to hear at a distance of 15 feet in the case of a motor vehicle or 30 feet in the case of a pedestrian. It also states that similar noise from a business or residence that is plainly audible at a distance of 50 feet to “any person in a commercial, residential, multi-family dwelling or public place” is a nuisance and declared unlawful.

The proposed ordinance states that those who violate it will face fines, ranging from $25 for the first conviction to $100 for the third conviction. A fourth conviction will result in a fine of “not less than $100 nor more than $500 and/or may be imprisoned or sentenced to jail for a period not exceeding 10 days.”

Stephens recently explained his decision to introduce a noise ordinance.

“I get a lot of complaints about people pulling up to the gas station to get their car filled up, and they leave their doors open and the radio blasting and some of the words to the songs are laced with profanity,” he said. “People have their families and children in the car and they don’t want to hear this.

“At the same time, I get complaints about people here in the park with a boombox playing with the same type of songs that you can hear all the way over in the playground,” he continued. “We’re not telling anybody what kind of music they can listen to or anything else. We’re just asking them to keep it to a level for their enjoyment without infringing on somebody else’s right not to hear it.”