Village of Port Jefferson, NY
Suffolk County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Port Jefferson as Ch. 50 of the 1970 Code; amended in its entirety 6-3-2013 by L.L. No. 8-2013. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Amusements and entertainment — See Ch. 85.
Beaches — See Ch. 91.
Port Jefferson Harbor Complex Waterway — See Ch. 95.
Building construction — See Ch. 101.
Dogs and other animals — See Ch. 117.
Firearms — See Ch. 135.
Helistops — See Ch. 157.
Peace and good order — See Ch. 181.
Peddling and soliciting — See Ch. 185.
Sandpits and quarries — See Ch. 207.
Vehicles and traffic — See Ch. 250.

§ 173-1 Purpose.

The Village of Port Jefferson has a unique mix of commercial and residential uses which require the additional regulation of sound to ensure the peaceful and symbiotic coexistence of all uses within its boundaries. An additional challenge is posed by the geography of the Village, half of which is located in a natural bowl of hills surrounding the downtown area and harbor. This feature creates a natural amphitheater in which sound is transmitted over a wide area. Crafting of regulations that are uniquely appropriate for the Village of Port Jefferson is aimed to protect quality of life of its residents while providing an atmosphere for businesses to flourish. The existence of unreasonably loud, unnecessarily disturbing or unusual noise within the Village has become an increasingly significant problem during recent years. Such noise pollution which is prolonged, unusual or unnatural in its time, place and use is harmful to the peace, welfare, comfort, safety, convenience, good order and prosperity of the inhabitants of the Village of Port Jefferson. It is the public policy and findings of the Village Board that every person is entitled to noise levels that are not detrimental to life, health and the enjoyment of his or her property. The provisions and prohibitions hereinafter enacted are in pursuance of this policy and these findings and for the purpose of protecting and promoting the public health, comfort, convenience, peace, safety, welfare and prosperity of the Village of Port Jefferson and its inhabitants.

§ 173-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have their meanings indicated:
AGRICULTURAL EQUIPMENT
Including but not limited to farm implements, tractors (not including small tractors used for the maintenance of residential property), cultivators, and other such items that are customarily used for active farming.
AIRBORNE SOUND
Sound that reached the point of interest by propagation through the air.
AMPLIFIED SOUND
Sound which has its volume increased by electronic means.
CHARITABLE EVENT
An event whose sole purpose is to raise money for a specific charity or nonprofit organization.
COMMERCIAL SERVICE EQUIPMENT
All engine-powered or motor-powered equipment intended for infrequent service work in inhabited areas, typically requiring commercial or skilled operators. Examples of commercial service equipment are chain saws, log chippers, paving rollers, etc.
CONSTRUCTION DEVICE
Any powered device or equipment designed and intended for use in construction. Examples of construction devices are air compressors, bulldozers, backhoes, trucks, shovels, derricks, cranes, etc.
dB(A)
The A-weighted sound level in decibels, as measured by a general-purpose sound-level meter complying with the provisions of the American National Standards Institute specifications for sound-level meters, properly calibrated and operated on the A-weighing network.
DECIBEL (dB)
The unit for measuring the volume of a sound based upon the pressure level of a sound. For the purpose of this chapter, the standard reference pressure stated herein will be used to assure a consistent and standard reference for measuring sound.
FACILITIES
Building, structure, property, athletic field or park owned and/or operated by a municipality, school district (public or private) or fire department.
HOMEOWNER'S LIGHT RESIDENTIAL OUTDOOR EQUIPMENT
All engine-powered or motor-powered garden or maintenance tools intended for repetitive use in residential areas, typically capable of being used by a homeowner. Examples of homeowner's light residential outdoor equipment are lawn mowers, garden tools, riding tractors, snowblowers, snowplows, leaf-blowers, etc.
NOISE POLLUTION
Airborne or amplified sound which:
A. 
Causes temporary or permanent hearing loss in persons exposed;
B. 
Is otherwise injurious, or tends to be, on the basis of current information injurious to the public health or welfare;
C. 
Disturbs a reasonable person of normal sensitivities;
D. 
Exceeds standards or restrictions established herein; or
E. 
Interferes with the comfortable enjoyment of life and property or the conduct of business. The following are deemed to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life and property or the conduct of business, any enumeration herein shall not be deemed to be exclusive:
(1) 
Yelling or shouting that disturbs the quiet, comfort or repose of person or persons residing or occupying an adjacent or neighboring property.
(2) 
The using of, operating of or permitting to be played, used or operated, any radio, receiving set, musical instrument, phonograph, television set or other machine or device for the producing or reproducing of airborne or amplified sound in such a manner as to disturb the peace, quiet and comfort of the person or persons in the vicinity of the sound and/or residing or occupying an adjacent or neighboring property.
(3) 
Persistent noise from a domestic animal in excess of 30 minutes, which disturbs the peace, quiet and comfort of the person or persons residing or occupying an adjacent or neighboring property.
PERSON
An individual, association, firm, syndicate, company, trust, corporation, department, bureau or agency or any other entity recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties.
PROPERTY LINE
Parcel of land occupied by a building and accessory buildings or uses customarily incidental to it. When the complainant is the occupant of an apartment, condominium, homeowners' association, coop or commercial space, the "property line" shall be located at the edge of the space to which the occupant maintains rights.
SOUND-LEVEL METER
An instrument for the measurement of noise and sound levels, including a microphone, amplifier, an output meter and frequency weighting networks which comply with standards established by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) specifications for sound-level meters.

§ 173-3 General prohibition.

No person or persons owning, leasing or controlling the operation of any source of noise on any lot or in any structure within the Village shall permit the establishment of a condition of noise pollution. Except as provided in § 173-4, Standards, the use of amplifiers, speakers or other machines or devices capable of reproducing amplified or airborne sound from the premises, dwelling or building within the Village shall be considered noise pollution and shall be prohibited at all times.

§ 173-4 Standards.

No person shall create or cause to be emitted any noise, which when measured on a sound-level meter from the property line of a complaining party, or in the commercial districts, from the property line of the property from which the noise is being emitted or, the location of the complaining party, or the property line of the complaining party exceeds the following standards:
A. 
Sunday through Thursday:
(1) 
From 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., airborne or amplified sound in excess of 65 dBA; and
(2) 
From 7:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m., airborne or amplified sound in excess of 50 dBA.
B. 
Friday and Saturday:
(1) 
From 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., airborne or amplified sound in excess of 65 dBA; and
(2) 
From 11:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m., airborne or amplified sound in excess of 50 dBA.

§ 173-5 Exceptions.

The provisions of §§ 173-3 and 173-4 shall not apply to the following:
A. 
The intermittent or occasional use between 7:00 a.m. through 9:00 p.m. of homeowner's light residential outdoor equipment with mufflers or commercial service equipment, provided that such activities and such equipment and their use comply with the other provisions hereof.
B. 
Construction activities between 7:00 a.m. through 6:00 p.m. on Mondays through and including Fridays and between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays, and the associated use of construction devices or the noise produced thereby, provided that such activities and such equipment and their use comply with the other provisions hereof. No such use shall be permitted on Sundays unless by written permission of the Board of Trustees in any case of emergency.
C. 
Noise from agricultural equipment.
D. 
Noise from church bells or chimes.
E. 
Noise from snowblowers, snow-throwers and snowplows when operated with a muffler for the purpose of snow removal.
F. 
Nonamplified noise generated from athletic or recreational activities or events, taking place at facilities which are open to the public during scheduled hours of operation.
G. 
Noise from organized activities sponsored by any school district, private school or fire district or department within the Village of Port Jefferson.
H. 
Amplified noise from any school district or private school sponsored sporting events or commencement ceremonies.
I. 
Noise from municipally sponsored celebrations or events.
J. 
Noise from lawful fireworks displays, parades, and other charitable and special events held in accordance with all pertinent provisions of the Village of Port Jefferson Code.
K. 
Noncommercial public speaking or public assembly activities conducted on any public space or public right-of-way.
L. 
Emergency construction or repair work.
M. 
Noise from the activities of any fire department, ambulance squad, Suffolk County Police Department, Village Code Department or similar emergency or rescue organization in carrying out their official duties.
N. 
Noncommercial amplified sound that does not exceed the noise standard established in § 173-4, Standards, of this chapter.
O. 
Emergency stationary and mobile signal devices.
P. 
Audible exterior alarms in continuous operation for 15 minutes or less.
Q. 
Residential air-conditioning units.
R. 
Emergency generators.
S. 
The emission of sound from industrial and commercial equipment, provided the operation of such equipment is an integral part of providing product critical to the Village and surrounding region.

§ 173-6 Enforcement.

The provisions of this chapter shall be administered and enforced by the Village of Port Jefferson Code Department.

§ 173-7 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Any person who shall violate any provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of a violation punishable by a fine not less than $250 and not exceeding $500; any person who has been convicted of a violation of this chapter and is thereafter charged with a subsequent violation of this chapter at any time within five years of the first conviction a fine of not less than $1,000 but not exceeding $2,500 shall be imposed upon conviction of this second offense; any person who has been convicted of a violation of this chapter and is thereafter charged with a subsequent violation of this chapter at any time within five years of the first conviction, a fine not less than $3,000 but not exceeding $5,000 shall be imposed upon conviction of this third offense. If the violation is of a continuing nature, each one-hour period, or part thereof, of violation of any provision of this chapter shall constitute an additional, separate and distinct offense.
B. 
In addition to any other remedy provided by law, the Village may seek injunctive relief in a court of appropriate jurisdiction.

§ 173-8 Severability.

If any clause, sentence paragraph, section, article, chapter or part of this local law or of any local law, ordinance or resolution included in this code now or through supplementation shall be adjudged by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid, such judgment shall not affect, impair or invalidate the remainder thereof but shall be confined in its operation to the clause, sentence, paragraph, section, article, chapter or part thereof directly involved in the controversy in which such judgment shall have been rendered.