Town of Oconomowoc, WI
Waukesha County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Oconomowoc 3-15-2010 by Ord. No. 2010-3 (Sec. 10.12 of the 1986 Town Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Building construction — See Ch. 108.
Mobile homes and mobile home parks — See Ch. 200.
Nuisances — See Ch. 207.
Signs — See Ch. 244.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 265.
This chapter shall be known as the "Town of Oconomowoc General Lighting Ordinance."
The purpose of this chapter is protect our health, save energy and preserve the beauty of the night skies; and to improve nighttime public safety, utility and security by restricting the nighttime emission of light rays which are the source of light trespass and/or unnecessary glare, and/or detrimental to the safety and/or security of persons, property or vehicular traffic, and/or are detrimental to the traditional aesthetic values of the Town, and/or unnecessarily restrict persons from the peaceful enjoyment of their property.
All outdoor illuminating devices shall be installed in conformance with the provisions of this chapter, the Building Code,[1] the Electrical Code and the Sign Code[2] of the jurisdiction as applicable, and under appropriate permit and inspection. The provisions of this chapter shall apply to all existing and/or proposed outdoor illuminating devices installed, replaced, altered, moved or repaired.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 108, Building Construction.
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 244, Signs.
A. 
New uses, buildings, additions or modifications. For all proposed new land uses, developments, buildings and structures that require a permit, all outdoor lighting fixtures shall meet the requirements of this chapter.
B. 
Resumption of use after abandonment. If a property or use with nonconforming lighting is abandoned as defined below, then all outdoor lighting shall be reviewed and brought into compliance with this chapter before the use is resumed.
C. 
Existing uses and buildings. After a period of two years from the date of enactment of this chapter, any lighting in place prior to the enactment date shall come under the provisions of this chapter. All existing and new outdoor illuminating devices shall comply with the provisions of this chapter within two years after the adoption of this chapter, except as this applicability is specifically expanded or reduced herein.
D. 
Roadways. Municipal lighting for public roadways is exempt from the provisions of this chapter.
A. 
All outdoor lighting fixtures shall be fully shielded, full cut-off and shall use low- or high-pressure sodium or equivalent lighting.
B. 
All outdoor lighting fixtures shall be placed so as not to cause light trespass or glare beyond the property boundary.
C. 
All existing and new lighting for residential, except for low-wattage solar lights needed on boat docks, shall be turned off when not needed or no later than 11:00 p.m. Lights shall be on timers or motion detectors to eliminate dusk to dawn lighting, especially on shorelines, driveways, houses or other residential areas.
D. 
Residential light poles shall not exceed eight feet.
E. 
All lighting for commercial, industrial and other nonresidential activities shall be extinguished between 11:00 p.m. (or when the business closes, whichever is later) and sunrise. Security lighting for these establishments shall conform to the other provisions of this chapter. All lighting and/or luminaires associated with viable agricultural operations shall be fully shielded and when the white light burns out, lights shall be replaced with low- or high-pressure sodium luminaires or a similar type of lighting.
F. 
All light fixtures that are required to be shielded shall be installed and maintained in such a manner that the shielding is effective as described herein for fully shielded fixtures.
G. 
Beyond the shielding requirements of this chapter, all light fixtures shall be located, aimed or shielded so as to eliminate stray light trespassing across property boundaries.
H. 
Multiuse lighting must conform to the shielding and timing restrictions, if any, that apply to the most restrictive included use.
I. 
All luminaires mounted on or recessed into the lower surface of service station canopies shall be fully shielded, full cut-off and utilize flat lenses.
J. 
Generally. All lighting shall conform to the lighting standards described in this chapter.
A. 
The purpose of this chapter is to minimize light pollution of the shoreland environment without significantly inhibiting safety and security. This chapter applies to all lighting on berthing structures, piers or docks designed to illuminate those structures. Light fixtures which do not conform to these provisions may be allowed with a special use permit from the Town Board upon a showing of special circumstances affecting safety, security or general public interest. Nonconforming lighting in existence on the effective date of this chapter must be brought into compliance within two years. All shoreline lighting shall be fully shielded, full cut-off low- or high-pressure sodium or equivalent lighting and shall illuminate the dock/pier or berthing structure only and shall not spill onto the water and/or surrounding property. Low-wattage solar orange or amber lights are acceptable.
B. 
Flashing and rotating lights are prohibited.
C. 
Lighting inside a boathouse and intended to illuminate its interior is permitted, but should be turned off when not in use.
A. 
Submission contents. The applicant for any permit required by any provision of the laws of this jurisdiction in connection with proposed work involving outdoor lighting fixtures shall submit (as part of the application for a permit) a lighting plan that complies with this chapter. Even should no other such permit be required, the installation or modification (except for routine servicing and same-type lamp replacement) of any exterior lighting shall require submission of the information described below. The submission shall contain, but shall not necessarily be limited to, the following, all or part of which may be part of or in addition to the information required elsewhere in the laws of this jurisdiction upon application for the required permit:
(1) 
Plans indicating the location on the premises of each illuminating device, both proposed and any already existing on the site.
(2) 
Description of all illuminating devices, fixtures, lamps, supports, and reflectors, both proposed and existing. The description may include, but is not limited to, catalog cuts and illustrations by manufacturers (including sections where required).
(3) 
Photometric data, such as that furnished by manufacturers, or similar data showing the angle of cutoff of light emissions.
B. 
Subdivision plats. If any subdivision developer proposes to have installed any outdoor lighting, submission of the information as described herein shall be required for all such lighting.
C. 
Lamp or fixture substitution. Should any outdoor light fixture or the type of light source therein be changed after the permit has been issued, a change request must be submitted to the designated official for approval, together with adequate information to assure compliance with this chapter, which must be received prior to substitution.
D. 
Plan review. If the designated official determines that the proposed lighting does not comply with this chapter, the permit shall not be issued or the plan approved.
A. 
Flagpoles and other elevated objects, lighted. All state and national flags, statues, entranceway markers, or other top-of-pole mounted objects which cannot be illuminated with downward-directed lighting may be used only in the form of one narrow-cone spotlights which confines the illumination to the object of interest and provides that the lighting is restricted to an angle of not less than 75° up from the horizontal.
B. 
Holiday lighting. Holiday lighting is exempt from the provisions of this chapter.
As used in this chapter, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, certain words and phrases shall mean the following:
DEVELOPMENT PROJECT
Any residential, commercial, industrial or mixed-use subdivision plan or development plan which is submitted to the Town for approval.
FULLY SHIELDED, FULL CUT-OFF LIGHT FIXTURE
A lighting fixture constructed in such a manner that all light emitted by the fixture, either directly from the lamp or a diffusing element, or indirectly by reflection or refraction from any part of the luminaire, is projected below the horizontal as determined by photometric test or certified by the manufacturer. The lighting element shall not be visible to the naked eye. Any structural part of the light fixture providing this shielding must be permanently affixed.
GLARE
A light ray emanating directly from a lamp, reflector or lens such that it falls directly on the eye of the observer.
LIGHT POLLUTION
Any adverse effect of man-made light.
LIGHT TRESPASS
Light falling where it is not needed or wanted, typically across property boundaries.
LUMINAIRE
The complete lighting assembly, less the support assembly. For purposes of determining total light output from a luminaire, lighting assemblies which include multiple unshielded or partially shielded lamps on a single pole or standard shall be considered as a single unit.
MULTICLASS OR MULTIUSE LIGHTING
Any outdoor lighting used for more than one purpose, such as security and decoration.
SECURITY LIGHTING
Often used as a preventative and corrective measure against intrusions and other criminal activity on a physical piece of property.
SPOT LAMP
A specific form of lamp designed to direct its output in a specific direction (a beam) and with a clear or nearly clear glass envelope. Such lamps are so designated by the manufacturers and typically used in residential outdoor area lighting.
TEMPORARY LIGHTING
Lighting which does not conform to the provisions of this chapter and which will not be used for more than one thirty-day period within a calendar year, with one thirty-day extension. Temporary lighting is intended for uses which by their nature are of limited duration; for example, holiday decorations, civic events or construction projects.
TRANSLUCENT
Permitting light to pass through but diffusing it so that persons, objects, etc., on the opposite side are not clearly visible.
USE, ABANDONMENT OF
The relinquishment of a property or the cessation of a use or activity by the owner or tenant for a period of six months, excluding temporary or short-term interruptions for the purpose of remodeling, maintaining or otherwise improving or rearranging a facility. A use shall be deemed abandoned when such use is suspended as evidenced by the cessation of activities or conditions which constitute the principal use of the property.
A. 
Violations. It shall be unlawful for any person to violate any provision of this chapter or the Wisconsin Statutes. Each day that the violation continues after notification of noncompliance shall constitute a separate offense. The municipality may institute appropriate action or proceedings to enjoin violations of this chapter or applicable Wisconsin Statutes.
B. 
Penalties. Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be subject to penalties as provided in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article I, of the Town Code, except that a minimum penalty for a first offense shall not be less than $100 and the minimum penalty for a second offense shall not be less than $200.