Why is this ordinance based on feet from the property line instead of decibel levels?

    BRC 5-9-6 Unreasonable Noise Prohibited Between the Hours of 11 P.M. to 7 A.M. and the proposed changes use feet as a measurement to provide an objective tool in defining and proving the violation. Decibel readers can be easily miscalibrated and require training to use effectively. The distance from the property line can be easily measured and evidence can be gathered using the body camera worn by police officers.

    BRC 5-9-3 Exceeding Decibel Sound Levels Prohibited utilizes decibels as a measurement and is not changed by this proposal.

    How far is 200 feet?

    A standard city block is approximately 200 feet.

    Why is the measurement 200 during the day when it is only 100 feet at night?

    The difference in measurement reflects different community expectations of general noise levels during daytime and nighttime hours.

    How is the “property line” defined in manufactured home communities and apartment complexes?

    The property line of manufactured home communities is the perimeter of the entire community. 

    The property line of an apartment complex is the perimeter of the entire complex. For single-building multi-family dwellings, the property line is the line of the owner’s full property, not each individual unit.

    Noise within these communities continues to be addressed in accordance with Ordinance BRC 5-9-3 Exceeding Decibel Sound Levels Prohibited. 

    Why are tickets written to individuals vs. all residents at the house?

    This ordinance is specific to the individuals making the noise, not the specific address where the noise is being made.

    Does the ordinance require a complaint call or can officers just hear the noise and respond?

    The ordinance does not require a complaint call. Officers are able to determine a violation based on their own observation and measurements. However, this ordinance will not result in more police patrols. Police resource and response decisions are made based on data and specific call prioritization during a given shift.

    Does someone calling with a noise complaint need to provide a specific address as the source of the noise, or can they give an address or intersection of where the noise can be heard?

    It is helpful and more efficient for the officer to have a direct address for the source of the noise if that is available. However, a person calling the police because of a potential violation can instead give an intersection or address that is potentially more than 200 feet away where the sound can be heard.

    Will this impact residents who are just playing music while in their yard? While gardening, for example?

    This ordinance is designed to give more enforcement tools to address egregious situations that impact a neighborhood’s quality of life. Officers will be able to use discretion in issuing warnings and tickets and will be looking for the measures in the ordinance, as well as other factors to make that determination. It is unlikely that folks listening to music while they garden would use a volume that can be heard 200 feet away, but if they are, they could be subject to a warning or ticket.