Archive for Friday, October 1, 2010

Douglas County noise ordinance too lenient, some say

October 1, 2010


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Douglas County is rocking — and for some it’s a little too loud.

A few months after Douglas County commissioners put the county’s first noise ordinance on the books, some residents are asking for the law to be even stronger.

The main concern? Blaring music.

For Paul and Patricia Noreau, the problem is a neighbor who practices with his heavy metal band next door. From their house 500 yards away, they can hear music that is a mixture of guitar, drums, accordion and screaming.

“We just want peace and quiet when we are there in the evenings,” Patricia Noreau told county commissioners this week.

For Karen Jones, it’s her neighbors who mainly blast stereo music on the weekends starting early in the morning. While they seem to be partying, she wants to be outside doing yard work.

“When you buy property out in the country, you don’t expect this kind of infringement,” Jones said to the commission.

This spring, the commission adopted a noise ordinance from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. The county defined a noise disturbance as a noise that “interferes seriously with the neighboring residents’ reasonable use and enjoyment of their properties.”

Exempted from the law were agricultural and industrial operations.

The ordinance was adopted after one resident sent an e-mail complaining about neighbors who were operating four-wheelers, trucks without mufflers and noisy cars from night until morning.

Since the ordinance has been in effect, Commissioner Jim Flory said he hasn’t heard any complaints about the heavy-handedness of the law. But he wasn’t ready to expand the ordinance just yet. He said more study was needed.

“When we first passed it, there was a reluctance on all of our parts to extend the arm of government into the neighborhood,” Flory said. “It just sometimes has to be done.”

Paul Noreau said he just wanted the commission to adopt an ordinance similar to those in neighboring communities.

“The reasons that they play out here is they couldn’t get away with it in the city limits of Lawrence or

City,” he said of the band next door.


filmmaker06 6 years ago

Turns out for "living in the country" you don't live that far away, i live an 8th of that from my loud neighbors and deal with it, buck up or move to somewhere that is really in the country.

geoismeo 6 years ago

Note to Harley riders, please buy some mufflers! You're not cool, only irratating.

fester0420 6 years ago

harleys are way cool . makem louder lol

Richard Heckler 6 years ago

"“The reasons that they play out here is they couldn’t get away with it in the city limits of Lawrence or City,” he said of the band next door." Nonsense.

Has Paul Noreau approached the band members to work out a plan aka compromise?

Go next door,sit down and talk. One thing to keep in mind. Neighbors aka the band also have rights.

MyK3y777 5 years, 3 months ago

please know that noone was disrespectful to Mr. Noreau at anytime. In fact we approached them to find a peaceful solution when they would not.

booyalab 6 years ago

Wow, I agree with merrill for once.

I've dealt with noisy neighbors before and communication goes a long way. Most of the time, they're not deliberately trying to annoy you. They just may not realize that anyone is bothered by it.

been_there 6 years ago

Gee, I did that a couple of times. One guy slammed the door in my face, the other time they turned the music and screams up louder.

MyK3y777 5 years, 3 months ago

Merril I am so happy you asked this. I was the drummer in that band and we practiced 2 nights a week for 2 hours from 6-8pm and no they never approached us we approached them after the cops were called. Can you spell intolerance??

mae 6 years ago

Let us look at the flip side. Silence drives me nuts!

How about an ordinance requiring hermit neighbors to come out of their shell and talk some evening, hang out and enjoy some company?

recluses..... head for the mountains, not Kansas suburbs

kernal 6 years ago

Maybe your neighbors work all day then have chores at night, are busy raising their children or have health problems. Do you waive to them, give them a smile everytime you see them, make the first effort when you see them outside?

Kindness and being a good listener can open many doors.

Practicality 6 years ago

"The ordinance was adopted after one resident sent an e-mail complaining about neighbors who were operating four-wheelers, trucks without mufflers and noisy cars from night until morning."

Autie, you and your cuzins should knock this off.

pizzapete 6 years ago

Is this story a flashback to 1993? I remember it well, Compton taking over the Crossing (no more cheap music venue for local bands) and the noise ordinance (no house party's w/bands) helping to kill the local music scene.

imastinker 6 years ago

If you can hear your neighbors, you don't live in the country.

been_there 6 years ago

Boy they really cranked up the loudspeaker at the LHS game tonight. If I send any e-mail can I get a noise ordinance passed too?

MyK3y777 5 years, 3 months ago

HEY EVERYBODY!!! I know this article is old but I WAS THE DRUMMER IN THE BAND MENTIONED IN THIS ARTICLE!! When the band was together we tried very respectfully to reason with are neighbors and explain our position with them. Living out in the rural county there are so many noises that are as loud as, if not louder than, a silly rock band. i.e. grain elevators, distressed cattle, dirt bikes, ATVs, other neighbors stereo systems. A simple Rock n' roll band with a bunch of, at the time, High school students really doesn't seem like such a large deal in comparison. My oversensitive neighbors wanted peace and now, I'm sorry to say, they've won. After we tried to reason like adults they continued to push this, in my opinion, ridiculous noise ordinance and now it has passed and we have disbanded...Thanks alot for NOT letting a few teenagers try and chase their dreams as rock musicians!!!! And one more thing...We were an extrememly talented Hard Rock band (Not Heavy Metal) and an Accordion??? seriously??? I've never even seen an actual accordion!!! Get your facts right!!!

Cant_have_it_both_ways 5 years, 3 months ago

I would much rather have the noise that your dog crap in my yard.

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