Board OKs new noise ordinance

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NAUGATUCK — The Board of Mayor and Burgesses Tuesday night adopted a new noise ordinance.

The old noise ordinance, which was repealed, was one sentence long and stated that no one can shout, use a megaphone, or amplifier in a street, public place, or within hearing distance of a church or public meeting.

The borough formed a noise ordinance subcommittee last summer to study it and recommend changes. The subcommittee put forth a new, longer and more detailed ordinance to govern noise in the borough.

The new ordinance details what decibel levels noises can be in commercial, industrial, and residential zones and lays out a method for measuring the noise. The ordinance distinguishes acceptable decibel levels during “daytime hours,” which the ordinance lists as 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday, and “nighttime hours.”

The ordinance also gives police the ability to investigate and enforce it. If a person is found in violation of the ordinance they will receive a $100 fine for first offence and a $250 fine for each subsequent offence.

The ordinance also lists exemptions, including noise created as a result of, or relating to an emergency, noise from domestic power equipment operated in daytime hours, and noise from snow removal equipment, provided equipment is maintained in good repair and exhaust is adequately muffled.

People can also apply for temporary waivers of the ordinance through the police department.

The ordinance will have to be approved by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection before it can go into effect.