City of Somers Point, NJ
Atlantic County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Somers Point: Art I, 7-3-1939 (Ch. 58, Art II, of 1967 compilation), amended 6-19-1953 by Ord. No. 6-1953; Art. II, 10-22-1981 as Ord. No. 16-1981 (Ch. 58, Art. I, of 1967 compilation). Sections 188-2 and 188-7 amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I. Other amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Alarm devices — See Ch. 71.
Alcoholic beverages — See Ch. 75.
Dogs and other animals — See Ch. 120.
Entertainment — See Ch. 128.
Mercantile licenses — See Ch. 174.
Nuisances — See Ch. 191.
Peddling and soliciting — See Ch. 202.
Sunday activities — See Ch. 224.
[Adopted 7-3-1939 (Ch. 58, Art. II, of 1967 compilation), amended 6-19-1953 by Ord. No. 6-1953]

§ 188-1 Hours restricted.

No dancing, entertainment or orchestras shall be permitted in the City of Somers Point on Sunday between 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Eastern standard time, when that time is effective in said city, or daylight saving time, whenever that time is effective in said city. However, this Article shall not apply to piano or organ music or music received by television, radio or recording machines.

§ 188-2 Violations and penalties. [1]

Upon a complaint being made by any person in connection with any violation as set forth in § 188-1 hereof, the same shall be tried by the Municipal Judge; and, upon conviction thereof, such person shall be subject to a fine not exceeding $1,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days or community service for a period not exceeding 90 days, or any combination of the foregoing.
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I.
[Adopted 10-22-1981 as Ord. No. 16-1981 (Ch. 58, Art. I, of 1967 compilation)]

§ 188-3 Declaration of policy; purpose.

It is hereby found and declared that it is the public policy of the City of Somers Point to significantly reduce the ambient noise level in the City of Somers Point, so as to foster and protect the public health, comfort, safety and welfare of its citizens. As a matter of legislative determination and public policy, the provisions, regulations and prohibitions of this Article are in pursuance of and for the purpose of securing and promoting the comfort, peace and quiet to which the residents of the City of Somers Point are entitled.

§ 188-4 General prohibition.

No person shall make, continue or cause or permit to be made or continued any unnecessary noise.

§ 188-5 Enumeration of unnecessary noises.

A. 
Unless exempted under the provisions of this Article, no person shall cause to be made, directly or indirectly, any loud noise which disturbs, injures or endangers the health, comfort, safety or welfare of others within the City of Somers Point.
B. 
The following specific acts are declared to be loud, disturbing and unnecessary noises in violation of this Article, but said enumeration shall not be deemed to be exclusive:
(1) 
Horns, signaling devices, etc. The sounding of any horn or signaling device on any automobile, motorcycle, bus, truck or other vehicle on any street, road or public or private place, except as a warning pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 39:3-69, or any whistle or other device operated by engine exhaust, and the use of any such signaling device when traffic is held up for any reason.
(2) 
Radio and television sets, phonographs, etc. The use of radio or television receiving sets, musical instruments, phonographs or any other machine or device for the producing or reproducing of sound in such manner as to disturb the peace, quiet and comfort of the neighboring inhabitants or, at any time, with volume louder than is necessary for the convenient hearing of the person or persons who are in the room or vehicle in which such machine or device is operated and who are voluntary listeners thereto. The operation of any such device between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. in such a manner as to be plainly audible at a distance of 50 feet from the building, structure or vehicle in which it is located or, in the case of such instruments operated in the open, at a distance of 50 feet from the instrument shall create a rebuttable presumption of a violation of this section.
(3) 
Loudspeakers; amplifiers for advertising. The use of any radio receiving set, musical instrument, phonograph, loudspeakers, sound amplifier or other machine or device for the producing or reproducing of sound which is cast upon the public streets for the purpose of commercial advertising.
(4) 
Hawkers; peddlers. The shouting and crying of peddlers, hawkers and vendors which disturb the peace and quiet of the neighborhood.
(5) 
Schools; courts; churches. The creation of any excessive noise adjacent to any school, institution of learning, house of worship or judicial court while the same is in use, provided that the conspicuous signs are displayed on the adjacent streets indicating that the same is a school, church or court street.
(6) 
Drums, bells and the like. The use of any drum, bell, horn, loudspeaker or other instrument or device for the purpose of attracting attention to any performance, show or sale or the display of merchandise by any creation of noise or sound.
(7) 
Mobile loudspeakers. The use of mechanical loudspeakers or amplifiers on vehicles or aircraft for commercial advertising purposes.
(8) 
Yelling, shouting and the like on public streets. Yelling, shouting, hooting, whistling or singing on the public streets at any time or place so as to annoy or disturb the quiet comfort or repose of persons in any office, dwelling, hotel, motel or other type of residence or of any persons in the vicinity.
(9) 
Yelling, shouting and the like in private residences. Yelling, shouting, hooting, whistling or singing in private residences or places in such manner as to disturb the peace, quiet and comfort of the neighboring inhabitants. Any voluntary participant in such conduct which creates, in whole or in part, the proscribed conduct shall be a violator of this section to the same degree as the actual perpetrator. Yelling, shouting, hooting, whistling or singing between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. in such a manner as to be plainly audible at a distance of 50 feet from the private residence or place shall create a rebuttable presumption of a violation of this section.
(10) 
A commercial establishment from which loud noise emanates as a result of musical instruments, bands, mechanical musical devices and/or any sound reproduction device, live entertainment or patrons, from either the inside or any outside portion of such establishment, shall be in violation of this section whenever such noise is plainly audible at a distance of 100 feet form the place where it emanates between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 12:00 noon of the following day.
[Amended 7-27-2000 by Ord. No. 7-2000]
(11) 
Loading and unloading. The loading, unloading, opening, closing or other handling of boxes, crates, containers, building materials, liquids, garbage cans or similar objects or the pneumatic or pumped loading or unloading of bulk material or the pickup or compacting of refuse by persons engaged in the business of garbage collection whether private or municipal between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., commencing Sunday evening through Saturday morning and between the hours of 9:00 p.m. Saturday evening and 9:00 a.m. Sunday morning when the sound therefrom creates a noise disturbance across a residential real property line.
[Added 12-13-1990 by Ord. No. 24-1990]
(12) 
Construction and demolition. It is prohibited to operate or permit to be operated, except for emergency repairs, any tools or equipment used in construction, drilling, excavating or demolition work between 9:00 p.m. in the evening and 7:00 a.m. (9:00 a.m. on Sundays) of the morning of the next day, when the sound therefrom creates a noise disturbance across a residential real property line. For commercial projects with a construction permit value exceeding $200,000, the same prohibition applies, but the hours of prohibition, except for emergency repairs, are between 6:00 p.m. in the evening and 8:00 a.m. of the morning of the next day, and no work, except for emergency repairs, is permitted on Sundays.
[Added 12-13-1990 by Ord. No. 24-1990; amended 12-27-2001 by Ord. No. 16-2001]
(13) 
Power lawn equipment. Operating any power lawn equipment by any person or corporation or any power equipment used for the maintenance of trees, bushes, hedges, edging or any other types of landscaping between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., commencing Sunday evening through Saturday morning and between the hours of 9:00 p.m. Saturday evening and 9:00 a.m. Sunday morning when the sound therefrom creates a noise disturbance across a residential real property line.
[Added 12-13-1990 by Ord. No. 24-1990[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Subsection C, setting decibel limits on noises, added 12-18-1981 by Ord. No. 18-1981.
(14) 
Commercial establishments, including but not limited to restaurants, from which loud noise emanates as a result of the operation of heating, venting and air-conditioning motors and mechanical units and fans, or as a result of the operation of kitchen exhaust fans, or as a result of the operation of other mechanical devices.
[Added 2-27-2003 by Ord. No. 1-2003]

§ 188-6 Exceptions.

The prohibitions contained in this article shall not apply to persons:
A. 
Who are engaged in the performance of any public or governmental function, such as the sounding of a church or school bell or a police, fire, ambulance, air raid or like disaster warning, alert or alarm, whether such alarm shall be for an actual emergency purpose or for practice or drilling purposes.
B. 
Who are engaged in a religious, charitable, recreational, civic or political activity by means of a sound truck or other amplifying device for nonprofit purposes, provided that such persons shall have first obtained a permit from the City of Somers Point, upon written application, setting forth the sponsorship, date, hours and routes of such activity. The City Council shall issue such permit unless, having considered the date, time and route, it shall determine that the noise created by such activity shall cause undue discomfort to the public.
C. 
Who are engaged in any activity specifically permitted or required by any ordinance, resolution, statute or governmental regulation.
D. 
Employed by public utility companies engaged in emergency repair service; provided, however, that such noise does not exceed levels reasonably necessary to accomplish such work.
E. 
Who are engaged in the operation of power lawn equipment and other vegetation trimming equipment pertaining to golf course maintenance, except to the extent of a publicly advertised schedule which may be adopted or modified from time to time by way of a resolution passed by City Council after a compromise between the golf course and the adjacent residents and neighbors.
[Added 12-15-1994 by Ord. No. 14-1994]
F. 
Who are engaged in any activity, including but not limited to road work and construction, or other similar projects, or other events or activities that may occur from time to time for which Council in its discretion finds and declares by resolution that just and reasonable cause exists to waive all or any portion of this chapter.
[Added 10-10-2002 by Ord. No. 19-2002]

§ 188-7 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 3-14-1991 by Ord. No. 1991]
Any person who shall violate any of the provisions of this article shall, upon conviction, be punished by a fine not to exceed $1,000 or by imprisonment in the county jail for a period not to exceed 90 days or by a period of community service not to exceed 90 days, or any combination of the foregoing. The Municipal Court of the City of Somers Point shall have jurisdiction over this chapter.