Town of Bar Harbor, ME
Hancock County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Bar Harbor as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Dances and dance halls — See Ch. 54.
Noise — See Ch. 139.
[Adopted 10-2-1990 as § 08.04 of the 1990 Code; amended 5-21-1996; 10-5-1999; 6-4-2003 by Ord. No. 2003-2]

§ 14-1 Title and purpose.

A. 
Title. This article shall be known and may be cited as the "Special Amusement Permit Ordinance of the Town of Bar Harbor."
B. 
Purpose. The purpose of this article is to control, as required by 28-A M.R.S.A. § 1054, the issuance of special permits for music, dancing or entertainment in facilities licensed by the State of Maine to sell liquor or malt liquor in the Town of Bar Harbor.

§ 14-2 Definitions.

The following definitions apply to this article and do not affect the meanings of words or terms in any other article of this Code. As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
COMPLAINT
A verbal or written notice received by the Police Department from a member of the public or from a police officer that, in the opinion of the complainant, the licensee violated this article.
DECIBEL
The practical unit of measurement for sound-pressure level. The number of decibels of a measured sound is equal to 20 times the logarithm to the base 10 of the ratio of the sound pressure of the measured sound to the sound pressure of a standard sound (20 micropascals), abbreviated dB. The abbreviation dB(A) shall refer to readings taken on the A-weighted scale.
ENTERTAINMENT
Any amusement, performance, exhibition or diversion for patrons or customers of the licensed premises, whether provided by professional entertainers or by full-time or part-time employees of the licensed premises whose incidental duties include activities with an entertainment value.
LICENSED PREMISES
The physical location described in the special amusement permit application.
LICENSEE
The holder of a license issued pursuant to the provisions of 28-A M.R.S.A., Liquors, as amended, or any person, individual, partnership, firm, association, corporation or other legal entity acting as agent or employee of any holder of said license.
LICENSEE'S MANAGER
Person in charge of the licensed premises, including, by way of example and without limitation, manager, partner, agent, employee or person otherwise authorized to oversee the operation of the licensed premises in the absence of the licensee.
LOUD AND UNREASONABLE NOISE
Any sound, the intensity of which exceeds the standards set forth in § 14-6 or § 14-7 of this article.
MUSICIAN
One who performs music, whether instrumental or vocal.
OWNER
The person or persons having the right of legal title to or the beneficial interest in a building or parcel of land, as their interest is recorded in the tax records of the Town of Bar Harbor.
VIOLATION, FIRST
A first violation is deemed to have occurred if a police officer concludes that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a violation of this article has occurred and within the immediately preceding 12 months a licensee has received no summonses and no written warnings for violation of this article. Special amusement warnings and summonses issued prior to January 1, 2003, shall not be considered as within said twelve-month period.
VIOLATION, SECOND
A second violation is deemed to have occurred if a police officer concludes that there are reasonable grounds to believe that another violation of this article has occurred, less than 12 months have elapsed since the first violation, and the licensee has received written warning of a first violation; provided, however, that if a second violation occurs within five calendar days after the first violation, the verbal warning previously issued to the licensee or licensee's manager shall be sufficient.
VIOLATION, SUBSEQUENT
A subsequent violation is deemed to have occurred if a police officer concludes that there are reasonable grounds to believe that another violation of this article has occurred, less than 12 months have elapsed since the first violation, and the licensee has received written warning of a third violation; provided, however, that if a subsequent violation occurs within five calendar days after the third violation, the verbal warning previously issued to the licensee or licensee's manager shall be sufficient.
VIOLATION, THIRD
A third violation is deemed to have occurred if a police officer concludes that there are reasonable grounds to believe that another violation of this article has occurred, less than 12 months have elapsed since the first violation, and the licensee has received written warning of a second violation; provided, however, that if a third violation occurs within five calendar days after the second violation, the verbal warning previously issued to the licensee or licensee's manager shall be sufficient.

§ 14-3 Permit required; application procedure.

A. 
No licensee for the sale of liquor or malt liquor to be consumed on his/her licensed premises, situated in the Town of Bar Harbor, shall permit on said licensed premises any music, except a radio or other mechanical device, or any dancing or entertainment of any sort unless the licensee shall have first obtained from the Town Council of Bar Harbor a special amusement permit approved by at least a majority of the members of said Town Council.
B. 
Applications for all special amusement permits shall be made in writing to the Town Clerk on forms provided by the Clerk for that purpose and shall state the name of the applicant; his/her residence address; the name of the business to be conducted; his/her business address; the nature of his/her business; the location to be used; whether the applicant has ever had a license to conduct the business therein described either denied or revoked and, if so, the applicant shall describe those circumstances specifically; whether the applicant, including all partners or corporate officers, has ever been convicted of a felony and, if so, the applicant shall describe specifically those circumstances; the type of music and entertainment intended by the applicant to be permitted on the licensed premises; whether dancing is permitted, and any additional information as may be needed by the Town Council in the issuing of the permit, including but not limited to a copy of the applicant's current liquor license.
C. 
The Town Council may revoke or refuse to issue a special amusement permit if the premises or building to be used for the purposes do not fully comply with all ordinances, articles, rules and regulations of the Town of Bar Harbor.
D. 
The Town Council shall set the fee for the special amusement permit from time to time.
E. 
Within 15 days of the Town Clerk's receipt of a complete application for a special amusement permit, the Town Council shall hold a public hearing, at which time the testimony of the applicant and any interested member of the public shall be taken. Prior to the hearing, reasonable notice of the same shall be given to all owners of land within 300 feet of the applicant's premises as provided below.
(1) 
For purposes of the issuance of a new permit for an applicant for a particular location, reasonable notice to owners of land within 300 feet of the applicant's premises shall include written notice sent by United States Mail, first class postage prepaid, which notice shall be mailed at least five days prior to the hearing.
(2) 
For purposes of renewing a permit for an applicant against whom no complaint, warning or summons has been lodged in the preceding year, reasonable notice to all persons may be achieved by giving notice of the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the Town of Bar Harbor at least three days prior to the hearing.
(3) 
For purposes of renewing a permit for an applicant against whom one or more complaints, warnings or summonses (in any combination) have been lodged in the preceding year, reasonable notice may be achieved by sending a written notice by United States Mail, first class postage prepaid, which notice shall be mailed at least five days prior to the hearing.
F. 
The Town Council, after hearing and upon such terms and conditions as it reasonably deems necessary to protect the public interest and to fulfill the purposes of this article, shall grant or renew a permit unless it finds that issuance of the permit will be detrimental to the public health, safety or welfare or would violate municipal ordinances or rules and regulations, articles or bylaws.
G. 
A permit shall be valid only for the license year of the applicant's existing liquor license.

§ 14-4 Classes of permit; reapplication.

A. 
Special amusement permits granted by the Town Council shall be limited to the following classes:
(1) 
Without mechanical amplification:
(a) 
Class 1: single musician.
(b) 
Class 2: two musicians.
(c) 
Class 3: three or more musicians.
(2) 
With mechanical amplification:
(a) 
Class 1a: single musician.
(b) 
Class 2a: two musicians.
(c) 
Class 3a: three or more musicians.
(3) 
With mechanical amplification and dancing:
(a) 
Class 1ad: single musician.
(b) 
Class 2ad: two musicians.
(c) 
Class 3ad: three or more musicians.
(4) 
Other entertainment or amusement:
(a) 
Class 4: any other type of entertainment, as provided by 28-A M.R.S.A. § 1054(1)(C).
B. 
Any permit granted shall be for one of the above-noted classes. A licensee shall not permit on the licensed premises any music, dancing or entertainment which exceeds that permitted by the class of his/her permit, during the period for which his/her permit is valid as otherwise determined by this article.
C. 
During the period for which a license is valid, the licensee may reapply for a new special amusement permit, if he/she elects to permit dancing, music or entertainment which exceeds that permitted by the current permit. Said reapplication shall be governed by all the provisions of this article with respect to applications for a special amusement permit in general, including the payment of the usual permit fee.
D. 
A violation of this section by a licensee shall be grounds to revoke or suspend his/her permit and/or to refuse to grant a permit upon subsequent application by the same licensee.

§ 14-5 Enforcement; violations and penalties.

A. 
Enforcement authority. The provisions of this article shall be enforced by the Bar Harbor Police Department.
B. 
Violations. Each violation of this article following a warning or summons issued by a police officer shall constitute a separate violation.
C. 
Delivery of notices. Any notice mailed or delivered to any licensee as provided in this article shall be effective as to the licensee identified in the notice notwithstanding such licensee's refusal to accept delivery of the notice and notwithstanding any failure of any other licensee to actually receive notice. Any notice required under this article to be sent to the applicant or licensee shall be mailed or hand delivered to the applicant's address as shown on the application form filed with the Town Clerk, unless the licensee or applicant has provided written notice to the Town Clerk of a change of address.
D. 
Warning for first violation. Should a police officer conclude that a first violation of this article has occurred or is occurring, the officer shall immediately give a verbal warning to the licensee or the licensee's manager on the premises. Within not more than five calendar days of this warning, the Police Department shall deliver in hand to the licensee, or send by first class mail, a written narrative report of the incident, a copy of this article and a written notice advising the licensee that the Police Department has substantiated a violation on the licensed premises.
E. 
Warning for second violation. Should a police officer conclude that a second violation of this article has occurred or is occurring, the officer shall immediately give a verbal warning to the licensee or the licensee's manager on the premises. Within not more than five calendar days of the second violation, the Police Department shall deliver in hand to the licensee, or send by first class mail, a written narrative report of the incident, a copy of this article and a written notice advising the licensee that the Police Department has substantiated a violation on the licensed premises.
F. 
Summons for subsequent violations. Should a police officer conclude that a third violation or subsequent violation of this article has occurred or is occurring, the officer shall immediately give verbal notice to the licensee or the licensee's manager on the premises. Within not more than five calendar days of this violation, the Police Department shall deliver in hand to the licensee, or send by first class mail, a written narrative report of the incident, a copy of this article and a written notice advising the licensee that the Police Department has substantiated a violation on the licensed premises and requesting the licensee to present himself or herself at the Police Department to accept service of a summons. The police officer shall write a summons for the licensee to appear in the Maine District Court to answer therefor. The Police Department shall also provide a copy of all pertinent documentation to the Town Clerk, who shall place the matter on the next available Town Council agenda for action under § 14-5F(2) below. Court action under Subsection F(1) below and Town Council action under Subsection F(2) below are separate, independent remedies which the Town may pursue concurrently, and neither is a prerequisite to the other. Failure of the licensee to present herself or himself to accept the summons shall not be cause for postponement of the Town Council hearing nor negate possible suspension or revocation of the license.
(1) 
Court action. A third violation or subsequent violation shall constitute a civil offense. The penalty for the conviction of said third violation shall be a fine of no less than $100 and no more than $1,000. The penalty for the conviction of a subsequent violation shall be no less than $100 more than the penalty assessed for the previous conviction but no more than $1,000. Any penalties assessed hereunder shall inure to the benefit of the Town of Bar Harbor. Any violation of this article shall be deemed a public nuisance and may be subject to abatement by a restraining order or injunction issued by a court of competent jurisdiction, irrespective of whether a summons has been issued or a civil penalty has been sought.
(2) 
Town Council action.
(a) 
Upon being informed of a third or subsequent violation, the Town Clerk shall provide written notice to the licensee, either in hand or by certified mail, return receipt requested, and to all owners of land within 300 feet of the licensee's premises, by first class mail, that, in not less than seven days after the date of the notice, the Town Council shall conduct a public hearing to consider whether the licensee committed a violation. Neither the failure of any landowner actually to receive notice nor the licensee's refusal to accept certified mail shall necessitate another hearing or invalidate any action taken by the Council at such hearing.
(b) 
Following a hearing the Council, by a preponderance of the evidence, shall make a determination of whether the licensee committed a violation of this article.
[1] 
If the Council finds the licensee committed a third violation, Council shall suspend the licensee's special amusement permit for a period of 30 days from the date of the hearing.
[2] 
If the Council finds that the licensee committed a subsequent violation, it shall revoke the licensee's permit for a minimum of 30 days, but not more than one year, at the discretion of the Council, and the Council may refuse to approve future licensee applications for a special amusement permit.

§ 14-6 Regulation of noise.

[Amended 11-20-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-07]
An applicant for a special amusement permit hereunder shall, as part of his/her application, demonstrate his/her ability to prevent the emanation of excessive noise from the premises sought to be licensed brought about by music, dancing or entertainment, except for a radio or other mechanical device excluded under 28-A M.R.S.A. § 1054 or amendments thereto. The performance of amplified music out of doors by licensees is categorically declared to be in violation of this article. The performance of nonamplified music out of doors by licensees is prohibited between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m.
A. 
Sources of noise. Sources of noise contemplated by this section shall include musical instruments, sound modification or amplification devices used in connection with musical instruments and/or other similar devices which produce, reproduce or amplify sound created by musical instruments. Sources of noise shall further include any noise or sound produced directly or indirectly by the applicant's music, dancing or entertainment except for those mechanical devices specifically excluded under 28-A M.R.S.A. § 1054 or amendments thereto.
B. 
Noise. Sources of noise shall be required to be muffled so as not to be objectionable due to intermittence, beat, frequency, shrillness, intensity or volume.
C. 
Noise control. The maximum permissible sound-pressure level of any continuous, regular, frequent, intermittent or periodic source of noise produced by any activity regulated by this article shall not exceed 71 dB(A) at any time at the measuring locations specified in § 14-6D(3)(e) below.
D. 
Measurement procedures. For the purpose of determining noise levels as set forth in this article, the following procedures shall be used:
(1) 
All personnel conducting sound measurements shall be trained in the current techniques and principles of sound-measuring equipment and instrumentation.
(2) 
Instruments used to determine sound-level measurements shall conform to the standards of ASI Type I or Type II meters.
(3) 
The general steps listed below shall be followed when preparing to take sound-level measurements:
(a) 
The instrument manufacturer's specific instructions for the preparation and use of the instrument shall be followed.
(b) 
The sound-level meter shall be calibrated before and after each set of measurements. The calibrator itself shall be recalibrated at least once every year.
(c) 
When measurements are taken out of doors, a wind screen shall be placed over the microphone of the sound-level meter as per the manufacturer's instructions. No sound-level measurement shall be taken at wind speeds greater than 12 miles per hour; neither shall measurements be taken during periods of precipitation.
(d) 
The sound-level meter shall be placed as specified by the manufacturer's instructions and at least four feet above the ground. It shall be placed so as not to be interfered with by individuals conducting the measurements.
(e) 
Measurements shall be taken at points outside the licensed premises which are no less than five feet and no more than 10 feet from the lot lines of the licensed premises.
(f) 
No less than two readings taken by the sound-level meter within a fifteen-minute period shall constitute a reasonable basis for averaging a set of measurements. A simple arithmetic average may be taken, summing all the measurements and dividing the sum by the number of measurements taken. This is known as "L50 descriptor," representing the mean sound-pressure level which is exceeded 50% of the time.

§ 14-7 Loud and unreasonable noise.

Regardless of whether or not the mean sound-pressure level limit as set forth in § 14-6C is exceeded, the licensee or his/her authorized representative shall not permit the use of the premises to result in any continued, excessive or loud and unreasonable noise or any noise which either annoys, disturbs, injures or endangers the comfort, repose, health or safety of individuals or which results in disturbing the peace and tranquility of the neighborhood.

§ 14-8 Decision on permit application.

Any applicant requesting a special amusement permit from the Town Council shall be notified in writing of its decision no later than 15 days from the date his/her request was received by the Town Council. In the event that an applicant is denied a permit, the applicant shall be provided with the reasons for denial in writing. The applicant may not reapply for a permit within 30 days after an application for a permit has been denied, except with the consent of the Town Council.

§ 14-9 Appeals.

Any applicant who has requested a permit and has been denied or licensee whose permit has been revoked or suspended may, within 30 days of denial, suspension or revocation, appeal the decision as provided by Title 28-A MRSA § 1054.

§ 14-10 Admission charge.

A licensed hotel, Class A restaurant, Class A tavern or restaurant malt liquor licensee who has been issued a special amusement permit may charge admission in designated areas approved by the municipal special amusement permit.

§ 14-11 Severability.

The invalidity of any provision of this ordinance shall not invalidate any other part.