Chapter 9.60
LEAF BLOWERS

Sections:

9.60.010    Title.

9.60.015    Declaration of nuisance.

9.60.020    Definitions.

9.60.030    Use restricted.

9.60.040    Exemptions.

9.60.050    Violations, penalties.

9.60.010 Title.

This chapter shall be known as the “city of Sonoma leaf blower ordinance” and may be so cited. (Ord. 01-2016 § 1, 2016).

9.60.015 Declaration of nuisance.

A violation of this chapter shall constitute a public nuisance and, among other remedies available to the city, may be abated as provided in this code. (Ord. 01-2016 § 1, 2016).

9.60.020 Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter, the terms in this section shall have the following meaning:

A. “Holidays, city-designated” mean those holidays designated as such by the city of Sonoma, including: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, President’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans’ Day, Thanksgiving Day, the day following Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.

B. “Leaf blower” means a machine, powered by a gasoline engine or electric motor, used to blow, displace, or vacuum leaves, dirt, and/or debris.

1. “Electrically-powered leaf blower” means any leaf blower, leaf vacuum or other leaf gathering device powered by electric means, including but not limited to battery-powered leaf blowers and cordless rechargeable leaf blowers.

2. “Gas-powered leaf blower” means any leaf blower, leaf vacuum or other leaf-gathering device directly powered by an internal combustion or rotary engine using gasoline, alcohol or other liquid or gaseous fluid. Lawn mowers, lawn edgers and electrically-powered leaf blowers are not included in this definition. (Ord. 01-2016 § 1, 2016).

9.60.030 Use restricted.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision in the Sonoma Municipal Code to the contrary, in, on or upon any and all properties and areas within the city’s corporate boundaries:

1. It is unlawful for any property owner (including the city) or tenant or any employee, agent or contractor working for a property owner or tenant to operate or authorize the operation of a gas-powered leaf blower at any time for any purpose.

B. Notwithstanding any other provision in the Sonoma Municipal Code to the contrary, in, on or upon any and all properties and areas within the city’s corporate boundaries:

1. It is unlawful for any property owner (including the city) or tenant or any employee, agent or contractor working for a property owner or tenant to operate or authorize the operation of any electrically-powered leaf blowers at any time for any purpose except as follows:

a. It shall be lawful to operate and/or authorize the operation of electrically-powered leaf blowers during the following days and hours: Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., except on city-designated holidays.

2. The operation of leaf blowers shall comply with noise limits set by SMC 9.56.050.

C. No leaf blower shall be operated in a manner that directs dust and debris onto any neighboring parcel or public street. (Ord. 01-2016 § 1, 2016).

9.60.040 Exemptions.

The following shall be exempt from the provisions of this chapter:

A. Emergency vehicles and all necessary equipment, including leaf blowers, utilized by emergency responders for the purpose of responding to an emergency, or necessary to restore, preserve, protect or save lives or property from imminent danger of loss or harm. (Ord. 01-2016 § 1, 2016).

9.60.050 Violations, penalties.

A. Any violation of this chapter may be enforced either as an infraction or as a misdemeanor, or by any remedy available to the city under this code, or under state law.

B. Notwithstanding the foregoing to the contrary, for a first violation of SMC 9.60.030, the violator shall be provided a written cease and desist warning along with a copy of this chapter.

1. Upon a second violation of SMC 9.60.030 at the same location or by the same person, should the city determine to enforce said section pursuant to Chapter 1.30 SMC, a fine or penalty shall be imposed equal to the amount set forth in the council resolution adopted pursuant to SMC 1.12.010(D) for a first violation. Upon a third violation of SMC 9.60.030 at the same location or by the same person, should the city determine to enforce said section pursuant to Chapter 1.30 SMC, a fine or penalty shall be imposed equal to the amount set forth in the council resolution adopted pursuant to SMC 1.12.010(D) for a second violation, and so on for each succeeding violation of SMC 9.60.030.

2. Upon a second violation of SMC 9.60.030 at the same location or by the same person, should the city determine to enforce said section pursuant to SMC 1.12.010(A), a fine shall be imposed equal to the amount set forth at SMC 1.12.010(A)(1). Upon a third violation of SMC 9.60.030 at the same location or by the same person within one year, should the city determine to enforce said section pursuant to SMC 1.12.010(A), a fine shall be imposed equal to the amount set forth in SMC 1.12.010(A)(2), and so on for each succeeding violation of SMC 9.60.030 within one year.

C. This chapter may be enforced by any city of Sonoma employee or agent of the city with the authority to enforce any provision of the Sonoma Municipal Code or city ordinance. (Ord. 01-2016 § 1, 2016).