Lubbock City Council Tables Consideration of Amended Noise Ordinance
Thursday evening, the Lubbock City Council postponed consideration of an amended noise ordinance.
The proposed changes to the ordinance were put on the agenda by District 1 City Councilwoman Sheila Patterson Harris. However, even before Citizen Comments were heard at Thursday's meeting, the city council advanced the agenda item (7.13) to the front of the line and voted 7-0 to postpone consideration to February 23.
Earlier in the day Mayor Dan Pope said on Facebook that the city council needed to receive more citizen input on the issue, after fierce negative reaction online:
What had Lubbock citizens, and fans of live music up in arms? Here's what was on the official agenda for Thursday's meeting concerning the proposed changes to the Noise Ordinance:
"Ordinance 1st Reading - Councilwoman Patterson Harris: Consider an ordinance amending Chapter 14, "Noise", of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Lubbock, Texas, by revising Article 14.04 to define unreasonable noise and noise violations; providing a penalty; providing a savings clause; and providing for publication.
This item will amend Article 14.04 by setting maximum sound levels, and defining unreasonable noise and noise levels in order to further promote the enjoyment and use of property and to preserve the quality of the environment."
The following text was a part of the proposed changes to the Noise Ordinance, that the city council could have considered at Thursday's meeting (14.04.002):
(a) A noise is presumed to be unreasonable if the noise exceeds a decibel level of 85 dB(A) at any time.
(1) In order to evaluate the sound level, decibels shall be measured on a sound level meter using the A-weighting network; and
(2) Noise levels shall be measured at the property line of the property on which the sound is being produced.
(b) A noise violation occurs when noise exceeds:
(1) Seventy (70) decibels dB(A) after 10:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday until 8:00 a.m. the following day;
(2) Eighty (80) decibels dB(A) after 12:00 a.m. Friday and Saturday until 8:00 a.m. the following day; and
(3) A noise variance permit has not been obtained through the city secretary.
One of the citizen replies on Mayor Pope's Facebook page said:
The Mayor and City Council will work to hear input from Lubbock citizens and business owners over the next month, before the February 23rd city council meeting.