Town of Clinton, NJ
Hunterdon County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Town of Clinton 7-14-1981 by Ord. No. 81-7. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Barking dogs — See Ch. 64, § 64-8.
Noise permit fee — See Ch. 73.
Noise in Industrial Districts — See Ch. 88, § 88-56.
Peddling and soliciting — See Ch. 107.
Health nuisances — See Ch. 162.

§ 101-1 Definitions.

A. 
All terminology defined herein which relates to the nature of sound is in conformance with the terminology of the American National Standards Institute or its successor body.
B. 
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
EMERGENCY
Any occurrence or set of circumstances involving actual or imminent physical trauma or property damage which demands immediate action.
SOUND REPRODUCTION DEVICE
Any device that is designed to be used or is actually used for the production or reproduction of sound, including but not limited to any musical instrument, radio, television, tape recorder, cassette player, phonograph, loudspeaker, public-address system or any other sound-amplifying device.
UNREASONABLE NOISE
Any excessive or unusually loud sound or any sound which annoys, disturbs, injures or endangers the comfort, repose, health, peace or safety of a reasonable person of normal sensitivities or which causes or has the potential to cause injury to animal life or damage to property or business. Standards to be considered in determining whether "unreasonable noise" exists in a given situation include but are not limited to the following:
(1) 
The volume of the noise.
(2) 
The intensity of the noise.
(3) 
Whether the nature of the noise is usual or unusual.
(4) 
Whether the origin of the noise is usual or unusual.
(5) 
The volume and intensity of the background noise, if any.
(6) 
The proximity of the noise to residential sleeping facilities.
(7) 
The nature and the zoning district of the areas within which the noise emanates.
(8) 
The time of the day or night the noise occurs.
(9) 
The time duration of the noise.
(10) 
Whether the sound source is temporary.
(11) 
Whether the noise is continuous or impulsive.
(12) 
Whether such noise would disturb the peace and/or be considered a common-law nuisance.

§ 101-2 Prohibited noises.

No person shall make, continue or cause or suffer to be made or continued any unreasonable noise, as defined in § 101-1B hereof, or such unreasonable and unnecessary noise of such material character, intensity or duration as to be detrimental to the life, health or welfare of any individual or which annoys, disturbs, injures or endangers the comfort, safety, repose, peace or safety of any individual. In particular, but within limitation, the following enumerated acts are declared to be in violation of this section:
A. 
Sound reproduction devices.
(1) 
No person shall operate or cause to be operated a sound reproduction device that produces unreasonable noise. The operation of any such device in such a manner as to create unreasonable noise across a real property boundary is prohibited.
(2) 
No person shall operate, use or cause to be used any sound reproduction device for commercial or business advertising purposes or for the purpose of attracting attention where the sound therefrom may be heard upon any street or public place. Nothing in this subsection is intended to prohibit sounds emanating from authorized sporting, entertainment or other public events where such devices are used.
B. 
Shouting and peddling.[1]
(1) 
No person shall shout, yell, call, hoot, whistle or sing on public streets or in public places so as to cause unreasonable noise.
(2) 
No person shall call for the purpose of advertising goods, services, wares or merchandise within any area zoned for residential use so as to cause unreasonable noise. The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to the sale of merchandise, food and beverages at authorized entertainment events such as parades, fairs and sporting events.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 107, Peddling and Soliciting.
C. 
Squealing tires. No person shall operate a vehicle in such a manner as to cause unreasonable noise by purposely, recklessly or negligently spinning or squealing the tires of such a vehicle.
D. 
Noise-sensitive zones. No person shall cause or permit the creation of any sound by means of any device or otherwise on any sidewalk, street or public place adjacent to any school, house of worship or public library while such facility is in use so that such sound disrupts the normal activities conducted at such facilities or disturbs or annoys persons making use of such facilities.
E. 
Animals and birds. No person shall keep, permit or maintain any animal, including a bird, under his control which frequently or for continued duration makes sounds which create unreasonable noise across a real property boundary.[2]
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 64, Dogs and Other Animals, Art. I, Dogs.
F. 
Loading and unloading.
(1) 
No person shall engage in, cause or permit the loading, unloading, opening, closing or other handling of boxes, crates, containers, building materials, garbage cans or similar objects between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day in such a manner as to cause unreasonable noise across a residential real property boundary or noise-sensitive zone.
(2) 
The foregoing subsection F(1) shall not apply to the operation of any business which, prior to the enactment of this chapter, shall have specifically been granted, in writing by the Mayor and Town Council, the Planning Board or Board of Adjustment, the right to conduct the activities described in Subsection F(1) during other hours than those set forth in that subsection, or which, after the enactment of this chapter, shall obtain a permit in accordance with § 101-4 hereof. In such case, the hours set forth in writing by that body shall apply.
G. 
Horns and signaling devices. No person shall cause or permit to be caused the sounding of any horn or other auditory signaling device on or in any motor vehicle except to serve as a danger warning.
H. 
Powered model toys. No persons shall operate a powered model airplane, model motorboat or model automobile so as to create an unreasonable noise across a real property line.
I. 
Motorboats. No person shall operate or permit to be operated any engine-powered motorboat in any pond, river, stream or other waterway at any time.
J. 
Standing motor vehicles.
(1) 
No person shall operate or permit to be operated the engine of any motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) in excess of 10,000 pounds, or any auxiliary equipment attached to such vehicle, for a period longer than 20 minutes in any hour while the vehicle is stationary, for reasons other than traffic congestion, on a public right-of-way or public space so that the sound therefrom is audible across a residential real property boundary or noise-sensitive zone between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day.
(2) 
This subsection shall not apply to authorized emergency vehicles or to public utility vehicles actually engaged in any emergency repair activity.
K. 
Vehicle or motorboat repairs and testing. No person shall cause or permit the repairing, rebuilding, modifying or testing of any motor vehicle, motorcycle, snowmobile or motorboat in such a manner as to cause unreasonable noise across a residential real property boundary or within a noise-sensitive zone.
L. 
Exhaust muffler devices. No person shall operate or cause to be operated any motor vehicle, motorcycle, snowmobile, motor scooter, minibike or moped not equipped with a muffler in good order and in constant operation.
M. 
Construction.
(1) 
No person shall operate or permit to be operated any tools or equipment used in construction, drilling or demolition work between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 7: 00 a.m. the following day on weekdays or at any time on Sundays or legal holidays, such that the sound therefrom creates unreasonable noise across a residential real property boundary or in a nonsensitive area.
(2) 
The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to emergency work.
N. 
Industrial operation. No person shall operate or permit to be operated on a sound-source site any industrial operation that produces a sound level exceeding the limitations as provided in § 88-56E(1) of Chapter 88, Land Use.

§ 101-3 Exceptions. The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to:

A. 
The emission of sound for the purpose of alerting persons to the existence of an emergency.
B. 
The emission of sound in the performance of emergency work.
C. 
The use of bells or chimes by houses of worship engaged in religious activities.
D. 
Activities of the town departments in performance of their duties, drills or public demonstrations.
E. 
Activities in public grounds under authority of town officials.
F. 
The playing by a band or orchestra in a hall or building or in the open air when duly authorized by town officials.

§ 101-4 Permits for certain noise-making activities. [1]

A. 
Any person wishing to conduct activities which may result in the creation of noise which may be in violation of the provisions of this chapter may make application to the Mayor and Town Council for a permit to conduct such activity in accordance with this section.
B. 
In determining whether such a permit shall be issued, the Mayor and Town Council shall take into account the following factors:
(1) 
The character of the neighborhood in which the activity is to be conducted and its zoning.
(2) 
The time of day said activities are to be conducted.
(3) 
The type of activities or conduct which will create the contemplated noise.
(4) 
If the noise will result from the activities of a business, whether that noise is an expected and usual noise made by the conducting of that business.
(5) 
The nature, intensity and duration of the contemplated noise and whether it will be annoying, irritating or frustrating to persons who would reasonably be expected to hear it.
(6) 
Whether the contemplated noise would violate a particular section of this chapter.
(7) 
Such other factors as may rightly be expected to be taken into account in reviewing such applications.
C. 
The applicant for a permit in accordance with this section shall submit to the Mayor and Town Council an application which shall contain a detailed description of the activity which creates or causes the contemplated noise and the reasons why said permit should be granted.
D. 
The Mayor and Town Council shall thereafter hold a public hearing on the matter, and the applicant, at least 10 days in advance of said hearing, shall notify by certified mail all property owners within 200 feet of the property on which said noisemaking activity shall be conducted of the time, place and date of the hearing, and the applicant shall also serve therewith upon each such property owner a copy of the application.
E. 
Any permit granted hereunder shall be for one year and may be renewed thereafter from year to year upon payment of the appropriate fee. Upon application for renewal of the permit, no public hearing shall be necessary unless requested by a person aggrieved by the applicant's noisemaking activity. In such case the Mayor and Town Council shall hold a hearing to determine whether the permit should be renewed. In determining whether to renew said permit, the Mayor and Town Council shall apply the standards set forth in Subsection B hereof and shall also take into account the fact that the applicant has previously been granted a permit.
F. 
The fee for the application for a permit hereunder shall be as set forth in Chapter 73, Fees.
[Amended 3-26-1985 by Ord. No. 85-4]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 73, Fees.

§ 101-5 Violations and penalties.

Any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be punished by a fine not to exceed $500 or by imprisonment for a term not to exceed 90 days, or both. Each day of violation of any provision of this chapter shall constitute a separate offense.