CHAPTER 19A
NOISE REGULATION

Sections:

ARTICLE 1. GENERAL PROVISIONS

19A.1    Declaration of policy.

19A.2    Definitions.

19A.3    Decibel measurement criteria.

19A.4    Violations: Misdemeanors.

19A.5    Violations: Additional remedies: Injunctions.

19A.6    Severability.

ARTICLE 2. SPECIAL NOISE SOURCES

19A.7    Radios, television sets and similar devices.

19A.8    Hawkers and peddlers.

19A.9    Drums.

19A.10    Schools, hospitals and churches.

19A.11    Animals and fowl.

19A.12    Machinery, equipment, fans and air-conditioning.

19A.12.1    Power yard maintenance equipment—Definitions.

19A.12.2    Repealed by Ordinance No. 2130.

19A.12.3    Power yard maintenance equipment—Permitted hours of operation.

19A.12.4    Leaf blowers—Regulation of use.

19A.12.5    Power yard maintenance equipment—Violation and penalty.

ARTICLE 3. CONSTRUCTION

19A.13    Construction of buildings and projects.

ARTICLE 4. VEHICLES

19A.14    Vehicle repairs.

19A.15    Motor driven vehicles.

ARTICLE 5. AMPLIFIED SOUND

19A.16    Purpose.

19A.17    Registration: Required.

19A.18    Registration: Requirements and duties.

19A.19    Appeals.

19A.20    Fees.

19A.21    Regulations.

ARTICLE 6. GENERAL NOISE REGULATIONS

19A.22    Findings.

19A.23    Noise, prohibition of.

19A.24    Railroad crossings.

19A.25    Repealed by Ordinance No. 2134

19A.25B    Repealed by Ordinance No. 2134.

19A.26.    Loud party.

ARTICLE 1. GENERAL PROVISIONS

19A.1 Declaration of policy.

It is declared to be the policy of the city to prohibit unnecessary, excessive, and annoying noises from all sources subject to its police power. At certain levels noises are detrimental to the health and welfare of the citizenry and in the public interests shall be systematically proscribed. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise clearly indicates, the words and phrases used in this chapter are defined as follows:

(a)    “A” BAND LEVEL. “A” band level means the total sound level of all noise as measured with a sound level meter using the “A” weighting network. The unit is the dbA.

(b)    AMBIENT NOISE. “Ambient Noise” means the all-encompassing noise associated with a given environment, usually being a composite of sounds with many sources near and far.

(c)    BAND PRESSURE LEVEL. “Band pressure level” of a sound for a specified frequency band means the sound pressure level for the sound contained within the restricted band.

(d)    CYCLE. “Cycle” means the complete sequence of values of a periodic quantity which occurs during a period.

(e)    DECIBEL. “Decibel” (db) means a unit of level which denotes the ratio between two quantities which are proportional to power; the number of decibels corresponding to the ratio of two amounts of power is ten times the logarithm to the base ten of this ratio.

(f)    EMERGENCY WORK. “Emergency work” means work made necessary to restore property to a safe condition following a public calamity, work required to protect persons or property from an imminent exposure to danger, or work by private or public utilities when restoring utility service.

(g)    FREQUENCY. “Frequency” of a function periodic in time means the reciprocal of the primitive period. The unit is the cycle per unit time and shall be specified.

(h)    MICROBAR. “Microbar” means a unit of pressure commonly used in acoustics and is equal to one dyne per square centimeter.

(i)    PERIOD. “Period” of a periodic quantity means the smallest increment of time for which the function repeats itself.

(j)    PERIODIC QUANTITY. “Periodic quantity” means oscillating quantity, the values of which recur for equal increments of time.

(k)    PERSON. “Person” means a person, firm, association, copartnership, joint venture, corporation, or any entity, public or private in nature.

(l)    SOUND ANALYZER. “Sound analyzer” means a device for measuring the band pressure level or pressure spectrum level of a sound as a function of frequency.

(m)    SOUND-LEVEL METER. “Sound-level meter” means an instrument including a microphone, an amplifier, an output meter, and frequency weighting networks for the measurement of noise and sound levels in a specified manner.

(n)    SOUND PRESSURE LEVEL. “Sound pressure level” in decibels, of a sound means twenty times the logarithm to the base ten of the ratio of the pressure of this sound to the reference pressure, which reference pressure shall be explicitly stated.

(o)    SPECTRUM. “Spectrum” of a function of time means a description of its resolution into components, each of a different frequency.

(p)    MOTOR VEHICLES. “Motor vehicles” includes, but shall not be limited to, mini-bikes and go-carts.

(q)    SOUND AMPLIFYING EQUIPMENT. “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 include standard automobile radios when used and heard only by the occupants of the vehicle in which the automobile radio is installed. “Sound amplifying equipment,” as used in this chapter, shall not include warning devices on authorized emergency vehicles or horns or other warning devices on any vehicle used only for traffic safety purposes.

(r)    SOUND TRUCK. “Sound truck” means any motor vehicle, or any other vehicle regardless of motive power, whether in motion or stationary, having mounted thereon, or attached thereto, any sound amplifying equipment.

(s)    COMMERCIAL PURPOSE. “Commercial purpose” means and includes the use, operation, or maintenance of any sound amplifying equipment for the purpose of advertising any business, or any goods, or any services, or for the purpose of attracting the attention of the public to, or advertising for, or soliciting patronage or customers to or for any performance, show, entertainment, exhibition, or event, or for the purpose of demonstrating any such sound equipment.

(t)    NONCOMMERCIAL PURPOSE. “Noncommercial purpose” means the use, operation, or maintenance of any sound equipment for other than a “commercial purpose.” “Noncommercial purpose” means and includes, but shall not be limited to, philanthropic, political, patriotic, and charitable purposes. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.3 Decibel measurement criteria.

Any decibel measurement made pursuant to the provisions of this chapter shall be based on a reference sound pressure of 0.0002 microbars as measured in any octave band with center frequency, in cycles per second, as follows: 63, 125, 250, 500, 1,000, 2,000, 4,000 and 8,000 or as measured with a sound level meter using the “A” weighting. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.4 Violations: Misdemeanors.

Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor. Each day such violation is committed or permitted to continue shall constitute a separate offense and shall be punishable as such. (Ord. No. 1582,; Ord. No. 1983, § 43.)

19A.5 Violations: Additional remedies: Injunctions.

As an additional remedy, the operation or maintenance of any device, instrument, vehicle, or machinery in violation of any provision of this chapter, which operation or maintenance cause discomfort or annoyance to reasonable persons of normal sensitiveness or which endangers the comfort, repose, health, or peace of residents in the area, shall be deemed, and is declared to be, a public nuisance and may be subject to abatement summarily by a restraining order or injunction issued by a court of competent jurisdiction. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.6 Severability.

If any provision, clause, sentence or paragraph of this chapter, or the application thereof to any person or circumstances, shall be held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect the other provisions or application of the provisions of this chapter which can be given effect without the invalid provisions or application and, to this end, to provisions of this chapter are declared to be severable. (Ord. No. 1582.)

ARTICLE 2. SPECIAL NOISE SOURCES

19A.7 Radios, television sets and similar devices.

(a)    USE RESTRICTED. It is unlawful for any person within any residential zone of the city to use or operate any radio receiving set, musical instrument, phonograph, television set, or other machine or device for the producing or reproducing of sound between the hours of ten p.m. of one day and seven a.m. of the following day in such a manner as to disturb the peace, quiet and comfort of neighboring residents or any reasonable person of normal sensitiveness residing in the area.

(b)    PRIMA FACIE VIOLATION. Any noise exceeding the ambient noise level at the property line of any property (or, if a condominium or apartment house, within any adjoining apartment) by more than five decibels shall be deemed to be prima facie evidence of a violation of the provisions of this section. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.8 Hawkers and peddlers.

It is unlawful for any person within the city to sell anything by outcry within any area of the city zoned for residential uses. The provisions of this section shall not be construed to prohibit the selling by outcry of merchandise, food, and beverages at licensed sporting events, parades, fairs, circuses, and other similar licensed public entertainment events. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.9 Drums.

(a)    USE RESTRICTED. It is unlawful for any person to use any drum or other instrument or device of any kind for the purpose of attracting attention by the creation of noise within the city. This section shall not apply to any person who is a participant in an official school band or duly licensed parade or who has been otherwise duly authorized by the city manager to engage in such conduct. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.10 Schools, hospitals and churches.

It is unlawful for any person to create any noise on any street, sidewalk, or public place adjacent to any school, institution of learning, or church while the same is in use or adjacent to any hospital, which noise unreasonably interferes with the workings of such institution or which disturbs or unduly annoys patients in the hospital, provided conspicuous signs are displayed in such streets, sidewalk or public place indicating the presence of a school, church, or hospital. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.11 Animals and fowl.

No person shall keep or maintain, or permit the keeping of, upon any premises owned, occupied, or controlled by such person any animal or fowl otherwise permitted to be kept which, by any sound, cry, or behavior, shall cause annoyance or discomfort to a reasonable person of normal sensitiveness in any residential neighborhood. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.12 Machinery, equipment, fans and air-conditioning.

It is unlawful for any person to operate any machinery, equipment, pump, fan, air-condition apparatus, or similar mechanical device in any manner so as to create any noise which would cause the noise level at the property line of any property to exceed the ambient noise level by more than five decibels based on a reference sound pressure of 0.0002 microbars, as measured in any octave band center frequency, in cycles per second, as follows: 63, 125, 250, 500, 1,000, 2,000, 4,000, and 8,000 and for the combined frequency bands, “(A)” band. This regulation does not apply to utilities performing emergency work. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.12.1 Power yard maintenance equipment—Definitions.

For the purposes of Sections 19A.12.1 through 19A.12.5, the following words and phrases shall have the following meanings:

(a)    “Leaf blower” means any air-blowing machine which uses a concentrated stream of air to blow leaves, grass cuttings, trash or other debris and material.

(b)    “Lot” means an area of real property within the city as defined in Chapter 36, zoning ordinance of the city.

(c)    “Power yard maintenance equipment” means any gasoline or electric powered engine-driven device or machine used primarily for the maintenance of lawns, shrubs, trees or other landscaping. Such devices include, but are not limited to, lawn mowers, leaf blowers, string trimmers, edgers, hedge trimmers, and chain saws. (Ord. No. 1996, § 1; Ord. No. 2130, §§ 1, 2.)

19A.12.2 Repealed by Ordinance No. 2130.

19A.12.3 Power yard maintenance equipment—Permitted hours of operation.

Power yard maintenance equipment shall be operated only between the following hours:

(a)    Monday through Friday, eight a.m. to seven p.m.

(b)    Saturday, nine a.m. to seven p.m.

(c)    Sunday and holidays, ten a.m. to seven p.m. (Ord. No. 1996, § 1; Ord. No. 2130, § 4; Ord. No. 2201, § 1, 2010.)

19A.12.4 Leaf blowers —Regulation of use.

(a)    The use of leaf blowers, with the exception of California Air Resources Board (CARB) approved gasoline-powered leaf blowers and electric powered leaf blowers (“approved leaf blowers”) shall be prohibited in the city after October 1, 2010.

(b)    Commencing October 1, 2010, all CARB approved gasoline leaf blowers shall prominently display a city issued decal/seal verifying its approved status.

(c)    Commencing October 1, 2010, no business license shall be issued to any gardener and/or landscaper without proof of purchase of a leaf blower(s) allowed under subsection (a) and a signed declaration that the company will not use prohibited leaf blowers in the city.

(d)    The full blower nozzle extension shall be used for maximum efficiency and to minimize the spread of dust.

(e)    After leaf blower use, debris and waste materials shall be disposed of in trash receptacles or other equivalent container.

(f)    Leaf blowers shall be in proper working order and all manufacturers’ noise and dust control equipment on the leaf blower shall remain on the blower and be in operating condition. (Ord. No. 1996, § 1; Ord. No. 2130, § 5; Ord. No. 2192, § 1, 2009.)

19A.12.5 Power yard maintenance equipment—Violation and penalty.

No person, whether as principal, agent, employee or otherwise, shall violate, cause the violation or otherwise fail to comply with the provisions of Sections 19A.12.1 through 19A.12.4. Any violation of Sections 19A.12.1 through 19A.12.4 shall be punishable as provided in Chapter 1, Sections 1.7 and 1.7A of this Code. Any fines to be levied for any violation of Sections 19A.12.1 through 19A.12.4 shall not exceed fifty dollars per violation. (Ord. No. 1996, § 1; Ord. No. 2130, § 6; Ord. No. 2201, § 3, 2010.)

ARTICLE 3. CONSTRUCTION

19A.13 Construction of buildings and projects.

(a)    It is unlawful for any person to perform any construction activity within a residential zone or within 500 feet thereof on Monday through Friday before 8:00 a.m. and after 7:00 p.m., Saturday before 9:00 a.m. and after 7:00 p.m., and on Sundays and city recognized holidays before 10:00 a.m. and after 6:00 p.m.

(b)    For the purposes of this section, “construction activity” is activity requiring a building permit and defined to include, but is not limited to, the operation of any manual, electric or pneumatic hammer, saw, shovel, hoist, derrick or any other device used in the performance of site preparation, assembly, repair, demolition, alteration or similar action on structures, rights-of-way, or land.

(c)    The prohibition of this section shall not apply to emergency work as defined in Article 1 of this chapter.

(d)    City recognized holidays as of July 2015, shall be defined as:

(1)    January 1st (New Year’s Day);

(2)    3rd Monday in January (Martin Luther King Day);

(3)    3rd Monday of February (Washington’s Birthday);

(4)    Last Monday of May (Memorial Day);

(5)    4th of July (Independence Day);

(6)    1st Monday of September (Labor Day);

(7)    2nd Monday of October (Columbus Day);

(8)    November 11th (Veteran’s Day);

(9)    4th Thursday of November (Thanksgiving);

(10)    1st Friday after Thanksgiving;

(11)    December 25th (Christmas Day). (Ord. No. 2054, § 2; Ord. No. 2095, § 1; Ord. No. 2153, § 1, 2007; Ord. No. 2278, § 1, 2014; Ord. No. 2284, § 1, 2015; Ord. No. 2291, § 1, 2016.)

ARTICLE 4. VEHICLES

19A.14 Vehicle repairs.

It is unlawful for any person within any residential area of the city to repair, rebuild or test any motor vehicle between the hours of five p.m. of one day and nine a.m. of the next day in such a manner that a reasonable person of normal sensitiveness residing in that area is caused discomfort or annoyance. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.15 Motor driven vehicles.

It is unlawful for any person to operate any motor driven vehicle within the city in such a manner that a reasonable person of normal sensitiveness residing in the area is caused discomfort or annoyance; provided, however, any such vehicle which is operated upon any public highway, street, or right-of-way shall be excluded from the provisions of this section. (Ord. No. 1582.)

ARTICLE 5. AMPLIFIED SOUND

19A.16 Purpose.

The council enacts this legislation for the sole purpose of securing and promoting the public health, comfort, safety and welfare for its citizenry. While recognizing that the use of sound amplifying equipment is protected by the constitutional rights of freedom of speech and assembly, the council nevertheless feels obligated to reasonably relate the use of sound amplifying equipment in order to protect the correlative constitutional rights of the citizens of this community to privacy and freedom from public nuisance of loud and unnecessary noise. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.17 Registration: Required.

It is unlawful for any person, other than personnel of law enforcement or governmental agencies, to install, use or operate within the city a loudspeaker or sound amplifying equipment in a fixed or movable position or mounted upon any sound truck for the purposes of giving instructions, directions, talks, addresses, lectures, or transmitting music to any persons or assemblages of persons in or upon any street, alley, sidewalk, park, place, or public property without first filing a registration statement and obtaining approval thereof as set forth in this article. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.18 Registration: Requirements and duties.

(a)    REGISTRATION STATEMENTS: FILING. Every user of sound amplifying equipment shall file a registration statement with the city manager three days prior to the date on which the sound amplifying equipment is intended to be used, which statement shall contain the following information:

(1)    The name, address and telephone number of both the owner and user of the sound amplifying equipment;

(2)    The maximum sound producing power of the sound amplifying equipment which shall include the wattage to be used, the volume in decibels of sound which will be produced, and the approximate distance for which sound will be audible from the sound amplifying equipment;

(3)    The license and motor number if a sound truck is to be used;

(4)    A general description of the sound amplifying equipment which is to be used; and

(5)    Whether the sound amplifying equipment will be used for commercial or noncommercial purposes.

(b)    REGISTRATION STATEMENTS: APPROVAL. The city manager shall return to the applicant an approved certified copy of the registration statement unless he finds that:

(1)    The conditions of the motor vehicle movement are such that in the opinion of the police chief, use of the equipment would constitute a detriment to traffic safety; or

(2)    The conditions of pedestrian movement are such that use of the equipment would constitute a detriment to traffic safety; or

(3)    The registration statement required reveals that the applicant would violate the provisions set forth in this article or any other provisions of this Code.

(c)    DISAPPROVAL. In the event the registration statement is disapproved, the city manager shall endorse upon the statement his reasons for disapproval and return it forthwith to applicant. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.19 Appeals.

Any person aggrieved by disapproval of a registration statement may appeal to the city council for final determination. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.20 Fees.

Prior to the issuance of the registration statement, a fee in an amount established by resolution shall be paid to the city, if the loudspeaker or sound amplifying equipment is to be used for commercial purposes. No fee shall be required for the operation of a loudspeaker or sound amplifying equipment for noncommercial purposes. (Ord. No. 1582,; Ord. No. 1983, § 44.)

19A.21 Regulations.

The commercial and noncommercial use of sound amplifying equipment shall be subject to the following regulations:

(a)    The only sound permitted shall be either music or human speech, or both.

(b)    The operation of sound amplifying equipment shall only occur between the hours of ten am. and four p.m. each day except on Sundays and legal holidays. No operation of sound amplifying equipment for commercial purposes shall be permitted on Sundays or legal holidays. The operation of sound amplifying equipment for noncommercial purposes on Sundays and legal holidays shall only occur between the hours of ten am. and three p.m.

(c)    No sound emanating from sound amplifying equipment shall exceed fifteen dbA above the ambient as measured at any property line.

(d)    Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (c) of this section, sound amplifying equipment shall not be operated within two hundred feet of churches, schools, hospitals, or city or county buildings.

(e)    In any event, the volume of sound shall be so controlled that it will not be unreasonably loud, raucous, jarring, disturbing, or a nuisance to reasonable persons of normal sensitiveness within the area of audibility. (Ord. No. 1582.)

ARTICLE 6. GENERAL NOISE REGULATIONS

19A.22 Findings.

In enacting the following Code section, the city council finds and determines that as explicit a demarcation as possible should be drawn between unnecessary and disturbing noises on the one hand and customary and to be tolerated noises on the other; that the dividing line between these two must of necessity be somewhat amorphous depending upon facts and circumstances, and in a sense may involve a balancing of community benefits and burdens; that as urban life increases and congestion occurs, the populace must of necessity endure increased levels of noise, but by the same token, no one should have to endure either denial of reasonable repose and quiet or unnecessary depreciation of property values because of unreasonable noises, and the final test is perhaps not susceptible of rigid definition, but instead may only be circumscribed by applicable circumstances, this in turn, involving a balancing of individual convenience as opposed to community rights. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.23 Noise, prohibition of.

(a)    It is unlawful for any person within the city to make, continue or cause to be made or continued, or suffer or permit to be made, or continued, any noise of such loud, unusual, unnecessary, penetrating, raucous or boisterous nature or intensity as to unreasonably disturb, annoy, injure, interfere with, or endanger, the comfort, repose, health, peace, safety or welfare, of a person of normal sensitivity residing in the area.

(b)    The standards which shall be considered and objectively applied in determining whether a violation of this section has occurred or is occurring shall include:

(1)    The volume of the noise;

(2)    The pitch of the noise;

(3)    The intensity of the noise;

(4)    The duration of the noise;

(5)    The frequency of the noise;

(6)    The wave length or octave band of the noise;

(7)    Whether the noise is typical or atypical of the area;

(8)    Whether the origin of the noise is natural or unnatural; controllable or uncontrollable;

(9)    The relation of the intensity of the noise to the background or ambient volume;

(10)    The proximity of the source of the noise to other persons or properties;

(11)    The proximity of the source of the noise to residential facilities;

(12)    The nature and zoning of the area within which the noise emanates and to which it projects;

(13)    The density of the habitation of the area of the noise;

(14)    The time of day or night during which the noise occurs;

(15)    Whether the noise is recurrent, intermittent or constant;

(16)    Whether the noise is produced by commercial or noncommercial activities;

(17)    Whether the noise is artificially or electronically amplified;

(18)    Whether the source of the noise could easily be relocated, muffled or modified without expense or loss of convenience or effect, so as to reduce its intensity with regard to adjoining properties;

(19)    Whether the noise depreciates the values of other properties in the area; and

(20)    Whether the noise is a mere convenience to the person responsible therefor without apparent social value, as opposed to a noise relating to a reasonable use of his property or the exercise of constitutional rights. (Ord. No. 1582.)

19A.24 Railroad crossings.

On or after December 1, 1976, it is unlawful and a public nuisance for any railroad to operate a train through or across a public street unless protected by flashing lights and automatic safety gates, or separated by over or underpass. (Ord. No. 1713, § 2; Ord. No. 2121, § 2; Ord. No. 2134, § 1.)

19A.25 Repealed by Ordinance No. 2134.

19A.25B Repealed by Ordinance No. 2134.

19A.26 Loud party.

It is unlawful for any person or persons to make or continue or cause to be made or continued any unnecessary, loud or unusual noise which injures the peace, quiet, comfort or repose or endangers the health and safety of any reasonable person of normal sensitivity residing in the area due to a party or gathering at a premises.

(a)    Disturbance Violation Service Fee. In response to a complaint, if a police officer determines at the scene that there is a threat to the public peace, health, safety or general welfare, the officer shall notify the person in charge of the premises and/or the person responsible for the event, or, if either of those persons is a minor, then the parents or guardians of that minor, that if a police officer is called to respond a second time to a disturbance complaint at the premises, the person or persons shall be jointly and severally liable for the cost of providing police personnel on special enforcement over and above the services normally provided by the department. Such costs many include minor damages to city property or injuries to city personnel. The fee assessed against the person or persons for such costs shall be set by resolution. The city reserves its legal options to elect any other legal remedies when the costs exceed limits set by resolution.

The chief of police of the city police department shall prepare regulations for the implementation of this section.

(b)    Accounting and Billing. When the person(s) responsible for the event are in fact served with a notice that they will be billed for the police service on the second response, a copy of the report and copies of the first and second notice forms shall be forwarded to the chief of police or other division head, as may be the case, for review. The chief of police, or other division head, will ensure that appropriate billing occurs.

Any and all personnel who may be deployed by the city pursuant to this section shall be deemed to be on special enforcement assignment as employees of the city, except that the rate of pay for such special security assignment shall be set forth herein. The pay for each employee thus deployed shall be at the rate of one and one-half times the base salary of the employee. The chief of police, or other division head, as the case may be, shall report to the director of finance the name of the person, firm, organization or corporation requiring such personnel, the names of the employees so employed and the number of hours of employment. The director of finance shall thereupon bill the person, firm or corporation employing same personnel for the amount paid to each plus the cost of workmen’s compensation charges and other administrative costs. Any failure of the person to make payment shall constitute a debt due solely to the city.

(c)    Administrative Rules and Regulations. The chief of police may adopt administrative rules and regulations for the purpose of implementing the provisions of this section. (Ord. No. 2006, § 1.)