Chapter 10.32
SOUND-AMPLIFYING EQUIPMENT*

Sections:

10.32.010    Definitions.

10.32.020    Permit Required.

10.32.030    Application for Permit.

10.32.040    Issuance of Permit.

10.32.050    Sound-Amplification Equipment Prohibited on Public Beaches.

10.32.060    Regulations for Use.

10.32.070    Possession and Display of Permit.

10.32.080    Revocation of Permit.

10.32.090    Exceptions.

*    Prior history: 1949 Code §§ 4500—4508; Ords. 1084, 1361, 1645 and 1691.

10.32.010 Definitions.

As used in this chapter:

“Sound-amplifying equipment” means any machine or device for the amplification of the human voice, music or any other sound. Sound-amplifying equipment shall not be construed to include electronic devices, including but not limited to radios, tape players, tape recorders, compact disc players, electric keyboards, music synthesizers, record players or televisions, which are designed and operated for personal use, or which are used entirely within a building and are not designed or used to convey the human voice, music or any other sound to an audience outside such building, or which are used in vehicles and heard only by occupants of the vehicle in which installed.

“Sound truck” means any vehicle having mounted thereon or attached thereto any sound-amplifying equipment. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.020 Permit Required.

No person shall use or cause to be used any sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck with its sound-amplifying equipment in the City without first having applied for and obtained a permit from the Finance Director as provided in this chapter. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.030 Application for Permit.

Applications for permits for the use of sound-amplifying equipment or sound trucks shall be filed with the Finance Department on forms supplied by the City. The application shall contain the following information:

A.    Name and home address of the applicant;

B.    Business address of the applicant;

C.    If the application is for the use of a sound track, it shall contain the names of the legal and registered owners of the sound truck, and the year, make, and license number of the truck;

D.    The address or location where the sound amplifying equipment is to be used; or, if the application is for a sound truck, then a general statement as to the section or sections of the City in which the sound truck will be used;

E.    The name and address of the person who will have direct charge of the operation of the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck;

F.    The purpose for which the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck will be used;

G.    The proposed hours of operation of the sound-amplifying system or sound truck;

H.    The number of days of proposed operation of the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck;

I.    A general description of the sound-amplifying equipment to be used;

J.    The maximum sound-producing power of the sound-amplifying equipment to be used, including:

1.    The wattage to be used,

2.    The volume in decibels of the sound which shall be produced,

3.    The approximate maximum distance sound will be projected from the sound-amplifying equipment. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.040 Issuance of Permit.

A.    Upon receiving a complete application for a permit for the use of sound-amplifying equipment or a sound truck, the Finance Director or designee shall conduct an investigation within ten (10) days of receipt of a complete application to determine whether to approve the application. Unless the application is denied pursuant to subsection (B) of this section, the Finance Director or designee shall approve or conditionally approve the application for a permit if it is determined that all the requirements of this chapter are met and if it appears from the information contained in the application and such additional information as may be presented to the Finance Director or designee that the proposed use of the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck complies with the regulations contained in Section 10.32.060. The permit shall be nontransferable and valid for a period not to exceed six months.

B.    Denial of Application. An application for a permit for the use of sound-amplifying equipment or a sound truck may be denied under any of the following circumstances:

1.    The City has revoked a permit obtained by the applicant pursuant to Section 10.32.080 within eighteen (18) months of the date of the application for a permit under this chapter;

2.    The applicant has received a citation for violating Chapter 10.28, this chapter or Chapter 10.66 within eighteen (18) months of the date of the application for a permit under this chapter; or

3.    The City has issued a citation under Chapter 10.28, this chapter or Chapter 10.66 to the address or location where the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck is sought to be used by the applicant within eighteen (18) months of the date of the application for a permit under this chapter.

C.    Specification of Hours. If a permit is granted, the Finance Director or designee shall specify the hours during which the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck may be used after considering the needs of the applicant, the area or areas in which the sound will be emitted, and the effects of such use on the public’s health, safety and welfare.

D.    Appeals. Actions by the Finance Director or designee may be appealed by any interested party to the City Manager by filing a written statement with the City Clerk setting forth the facts and circumstances regarding the action by the Finance Director or designee. The City Manager shall notify the appellant and applicant in writing of the time and place of the hearing on the appeal. The hearing on appeal shall be heard and determined by the City Manager within ten (10) days of receipt of a written appeal. The decision of the City Manager shall be final. (Ord. 2014-5 § 1, 2014: Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.050 Sound-Amplification Equipment Prohibited on Public Beaches.

A.    Policy Statement. The City Council makes the following findings:

1.    The public beaches adjacent to the waters of the Pacific Ocean and Newport Harbor are a unique recreational resource which the City holds in trust under a legislative grant from the State of California.

2.    These public beaches are intensively used for swimming, surfing and sunbathing by a diverse group of people which includes City residents, tourists and persons residing throughout Orange County and Southern California.

3.    The use of sound trucks and sound-amplification equipment by groups and organizations who wish to hold concerts, meetings or public assemblies on or near these public beaches is disturbing to the vast majority of the people using the beaches for recreation and to local residents whose homes are in close proximity to the beaches.

B.    No permit shall be issued for and no person shall use any sound truck or sound-amplification equipment on any public beach. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.060 Regulations for Use.

The use of sound-amplifying equipment and sound trucks in the City shall be subject to the following regulations:

A.    The only sounds permitted are music and human speech.

B.    Sound shall not be emitted within one hundred (100) yards of hospitals, churches, and the City Hall.

C.    The human speech and music amplified shall not be profane, lewd or slanderous.

D.    The volume of sound shall be controlled so that it will not be audible for a distance in excess of one hundred (100) feet from the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck, and so that the volume is not unreasonably loud, raucous, jarring, disturbing or a nuisance to persons within the range of allowed audibility.

E.    The sound amplifying equipment or sound truck shall not be used between the hours of eight p.m. and eight a.m. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.070 Possession and Display of Permit.

Any person operating the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck shall keep the permit granted in his possession at all times while operating the equipment or sound truck and shall promptly display the permit to any Police Officer of the City upon request. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.080 Revocation of Permit.

A.    The Finance Director may revoke any permit issued pursuant to this chapter on any of the following grounds:

1.    The sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck has been used contrary to the regulations contained in Section 10.32.060 or the terms of the permit;

2.    The applicant has made a misrepresentation of a material fact in the application;

3.    The use of the sound-amplifying equipment or sound truck results in traffic congestion, or threatens public traffic safety.

B.    Notice of the revocation shall be given to the permit holder in writing. If the notice is personally served upon the permit holder, it shall be effective immediately upon service. If the notice of revocation is delivered by mailing, it shall be effective on the third day following the deposit of the notice in the United States mail. The permit holder may appeal the action of the Finance Director to the City Manager by filing a notice of appeal with the City Clerk within ten (10) days after the effective date of the revocation. If a notice of appeal is not filed within the ten (10) day period, the revocation shall become final. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)

10.32.090 Exceptions.

The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to the use of sound trucks or sound-amplifying equipment in conducting the following activities:

A.    Any activity conducted on public property, or on private property with the consent of the owner, by any public entity, or its officers, employees, representatives, agents, subcontractors, permittees, licensees, or lessees, which is consistent with, and in furtherance of, the governmental functions or services the public entity is authorized, or responsible, to perform. Activities which are exempt from the provisions of this chapter include, without limitation, sporting and recreational activities which are sponsored or co-sponsored by the City of Newport Beach or the Newport Mesa Unified School District;

B.    Activities conducted on property of churches or private clubs where the sound is confined within the boundaries of such property;

C.    Licensed sightseeing or excursion vessels operating on the waters of Newport Harbor;

D.    Activities conducted within the boundaries of City-licensed amusement centers where the sound is confined within the boundaries of such amusement centers;

E.    Activities regulated by a use permit or other land use control under the provisions of Title 20, planning and zoning;

F.    Activities regulated by a special events permit under the provisions of Chapter 11.03, special events. (Ord. 95-38 § 4 (part), 1995)