[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of LaFayette 12-8-2020 by L.L. No. 2-2020. Amendments noted where applicable.]
It is hereby declared to be the policy of the Town Board to prevent unreasonably loud, disturbing and unnecessary noise and to reduce noise level within the Town so as to preserve, protect and promote the public health, safety and welfare and to foster convenience, peace and quiet within the Town by the inhabitants thereof and transients therein. The Town Board finds that every person is entitled to have maintained noise levels which are not detrimental to life, health and the enjoyment of property, and that excessive and unnecessary noise within the Town of LaFayette affects and is a menace to public health, safety, welfare and the comfort of the people of the Town.
For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- BURGLAR ALARM
- Any sound signal device designed and intended to produce an audible sound signal upon unauthorized entrance into a building or motor vehicle.
- Any activity necessary or incidental to the erection, demolition, assembling, altering, installing or equipping of buildings, highways, roads, utility lines or other property.
- CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
- Any person or persons, as appointed from time to time by the Town, trained in the measurement of sound and empowered to issue a summons for violation of this chapter.
- DECIBEL (dB)
- The practical unit of measurement of sound pressure level; the number of decibels of a measured sound is equal to 20 times the logarithm to the base 10 of the sound pressure of the measured sound to the sound pressure of a standard sound (20 micro-pascals); and abbreviated as "dB."
- Any sound of such level and duration as to be or which tends to be injurious to human health or welfare or that would unreasonably interfere with the enjoyment of life or property exceeding the limits as set forth in this chapter.
- REAL PROPERTY LINE
- Either the imaginary line, including its vertical extension, that separates one parcel of real property from another, or the vertical and horizontal boundaries of a dwelling unit that is one in a multi-dwelling-unit building.
- SOUND DEVICE OR APPARATUS
- Any apparatus or device for the making, reproduction or amplification of the human voice or other sounds.
- SOUND LEVEL
- The sound pressure level measured in decibels with a sound-level meter set for A-weighting; sound level as expressed in dBA.
- SOUND LEVEL MEASURE
- An instrument for the measurement of noise and sound.
- That which is not required by the usual circumstances. No person shall cause, suffer, allow or permit the existence of unnecessary sound which tends to injure, alarm, annoy, harass or disturb the peaceful enjoyment of property of another.
- WEIGHTED SOUND LEVEL
- The sound level, in decibels, reported as measured by a sound-level-measuring instrument having an A-weighted network which discriminates against the lower frequencies according to a relationship approximating the auditory sensitivity of the human ear. The level so read is designated as "dBA."
No person shall cause, suffer, allow or permit the operation of any source of sound on a particular category of property or any public space or right-of-way in such a manner as to create a sound level that exceeds the particular sound level limits set forth as follows: between 7:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m., 70 dBA and between 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., 60 dBA, when measured at the adjoining property line nearest the sound source.
No person shall make, continue or cause or permit to be made any unnecessary noise. The following acts are declared to be prima facie evidence of a violation of this chapter and are prohibited, but said enumeration shall not be deemed to be exclusive:
Burglar alarms. No person shall operate or caused to be operated an audible burglar alarm unless such alarm automatically terminates its operation within 15 minutes after it has been activated and does not operate more than 15 minutes in any one-hour period.
Construction and operation of machinery. No person shall conduct or permit to be conducted construction and/or the operation of machinery, equipment and/or domestic power tools, including lawn mowers, sanders, grinders, and leaf blowers, between the hours of 9:00 p.m. the preceding night and 7:00 a.m. on Monday through Saturday, and between the hours of 9:00 p.m. the preceding night and 9:00 a.m. on Sundays and federal holidays, so as to cause unnecessary noise across a real property line.
Exhausts. No person shall cause or permit the discharge into the open air of the exhaust of any device, including but not limited to any motor vehicle engine, except through a muffler which will effectively prevent the creation of unnecessary noise therefrom.
Horn or signal. No person shall sound or permit the sounding of any horn or signal on any car, motorcycle, bus or other vehicle, except as a warning signal pursuant to the provisions of the Vehicle and Traffic Law of the State of New York.
Loading and unloading vehicles. No person shall cause or permit the creation of unnecessary noise in connection with the loading or unloading of any material, equipment or garbage cans or the handling of bales, boxes, crates or similar containers.
Motor vehicles. No person shall use or cause to be used any automobile, motorcycle, bus or other motor vehicle so out of repair, so loaded or in such manner as to create loud and unnecessary grating, grinding, rattling or other unnecessary noise.
Sound reproduction devices. No person shall operate, play or permit the operation or playing of any radio, CD or tape player, television, public address system, loud speaker, musical instrument, sound amplifier or similar device which produces, reproduces or amplifies sound in such a manner as to create unnecessary noise at a distance of 75 feet from the noise source or across a real property line, whichever is less.
Vocal disturbances. No person shall cause or permit to be caused any unnecessary noise by shouting, yelling, whistling, singing or other vocal exclamations.
The following sounds shall not be deemed to be a violation of this chapter:
Sounds created by the use of any organ, bell, chimes or any other similar instrument or device of any church, synagogue or school on or within its own premises in connection with religious rites or ceremonies of such church or synagogue or in connection with a school education program.
Sounds created by snow blowers, chain saws and other domestic tools and equipment when used to clear driveways, streets or walkways during and after snowfalls, rainstorms, ice storms, windstorms or other similar emergencies.
Sounds created by agricultural activities.
Sounds connected with athletic, recreational, or sporting events of any public organization or private school, provided that such sounds shall be reduced between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 7:00 a.m.
Sounds connected with organized activities sponsored by any school district or fire district or department within the Town, provided that such sounds shall be reduced between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 7:00 a.m.
Sounds connected with municipally sponsored celebrations or events, including lawful fireworks displays, parades, carnivals and the like, held in accordance with all pertinent provisions of the Town Code, provided that such sounds shall be reduced between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 7:00 a.m.
Sounds connected with the lawful hunting of animals or game during the appropriate hunting or gaming seasons.
Sounds created by emergency construction or repair work authorized or performed by the Town of LaFayette, the County of Onondaga, the State of New York or any recognized utility serving the area.
Sounds created by the exercise of commercial activities to the extent that such sounds are already controlled by the Town of LaFayette through site plan approval, special use permit or otherwise.
Sounds created by police cars, fire engines, ambulances and other emergency vehicles when used in connection with an emergency, drill or test procedure.
Sounds connected with activities open to the public where proper authorization has been obtained from the Town Board or any other designated authority of the Town of LaFayette.
It shall be unlawful for any person to use or operate, or cause to be used or operated, any sound device or apparatus in, on, near or adjacent to any public street, park or place for commercial or business advertising purposes or for any person to operate or drive any automobile, truck or other vehicle for commercial or business advertising by means of any sound device or apparatus. The use of any trade, business or corporate name or the name of any person, proprietor or vendor in such commercial or business advertising shall be presumptive evidence that such advertising was conducted by that person, business or corporation.
It shall be unlawful to operate any radio apparatus, talking machine, loudspeaker, amplifier or other sound-making device on any street, park or public gathering place in such a fashion as to exceed a noise level of over 60 dBA as measured 20 feet from the sound-producing device.
This chapter shall be administered and enforced by the Code Enforcement Officer.