At and above certain levels, noise can be detrimental to the health and welfare of Bloomington residents. Understandably, certain noise levels must be tolerated by all residents in order for normal functions of urban life to continue. However, excessive, unnecessary and/or annoying noise should be subject to regulation. The City Council has determined that it is in the best interest of its residents to control noise in a manner which promotes the use, value and enjoyment of property; sleep and repose; and environmental quality.
Thank you for all the input we have received on this topic. Comments are now closed and will be presented to the Mayor, Council and Staff for the 9/10/2012 City Council Meeting.
Draft Noise Ordinance
Purpose of Noise Ordinance
The purpose of the Noise Ordinance is to “protect, preserve and promote the health, safety, welfare, peace and quiet of the residents of the City through the reduction, control, and prevention of unreasonably loud and raucous sounds, or any noise that unreasonably disturbs, injures or endanger the comfort, repose, health, peace or safety of reasonable persons of ordinary sensitivity.”
By establishing common-sense guidelines that residents and businesses can follow, the Ordinance promotes a more restful, pleasant environment.
What is a Noise Disturbance?
Noises which classify as disturbances are regulated by the Noise Ordinance. A noise disturbance is sound that:
- Is unreasonably loud and raucous which annoys, disturbs, injures or endangers the comfort, repose, health, peace or safety of others, within the limits of the City regardless of time of day or night.
- Exceeds the sound level limit set forth in the Ordinance, as measured by a sound level meter.
What are Some Examples of Common Noise Disturbances?
These are common noise disturbances reported:
- Loud parties
- Barking dogs
- Loud car stereos
- Domestic power tools
Exemptions to the Noise Ordinance
The Noise Ordinance does not cover noises from aircraft or railroads because federal and state regulations supersede local regulations. Emergency operations by public utility; emergency vehicle sirens; reasonable outdoor school and playground activities; other outdoor events, provided a permit is obtained from the City; City-sponsored events; and outdoor church activities are exempt from the Ordinance.
How will the Noise Ordinance be Enforced?
If a police officer determines that there is a noise disturbance, he or she will enforce the Noise Ordinance by issuing an ordinance violation citation to the violator. Residents are encouraged to report a noise disturbance in their area by providing the following information:
- Name, address and phone numbers. A caller may wish to remain anonymous, but this information is helpful in successful enforcement of the Ordinance and is requested to enforce a noise violation based solely on disturbing a reasonable person of normal sensitivities.
- Location of the source of the noise disturbance, and address if possible.
- Description of the type of noise, such as loud music, barking dogs, a loud party, etc. (being as descriptive as possible). Length of the disturbance.
A violation of the Noise Ordinance will result in the following fines: 1) 1st offense: not less than $100.00; and 2) subsequent offenses: not less than $250.00. A separate and distinct offense is deemed committed each day such violation continues.
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