Thursday, March 17, 2011

City pulls plug on proposed loud music measure

City Attorney Mac McCarley tells me the city staff is pulling the plug on a chunk of its proposal to change the city's noise ordinance. A new version will be offered Monday at the 3 p.m. public hearing that, McCarley says, aims for a balance that won't hurt performers and bars that aren't causing problems for neighbors.

The ordinance change has made a lot of musicians, bar owners and nightlife denizens angry, and McCarley said, they've been heard. (Read some of the Observer's coverage here -- Mark Washburn - "New noise rule is music to our ears" ; "Pub owners decry new noise limits" ; "Debate over outdoor music in Charlotte")

The proposed change to the ordinance would have barred "sound amplification equipment out of doors or directed out of doors" for live music or "other forms of entertainment" at a business if the amplifiers are less than 400 feet from residences. It would also bar amplified sound outdoors (note the outdoors, please. It doesn't apply to indoor music) at a business that's audible on residentially zoned property.

When I talked to McCarley about noon Friday, he said he and his staff were still working through exactly what they'd propose to the City Council but that it would be aimed at businesses that cause problems and try to protect those that don't.

25 comments:

thomas3452 said...

What a bunch of crap. The obvious desire is to stifle young people who are having fun. Pass a rule that the noise has to subside at 10:00 p.m. on weeknights, 11:00 p.m. on Friday nights, and midnight on Sundays, but ONLY in places where there are complaints by more than one or two killjoy old f*rts.
Check out why cities are successful: Because they have an active young population that likes to party and supports a thriving nightlife.
ROCK ON CHARLOTTE. NON CARBORUNDUM ILLEGITIMATTI!

Anonymous said...

Come on, Mary...

"(note the outdoors, please. It doesn't apply to indoor music)"

Nope, read your earlier sentence:

"sound amplification equipment out of doors or directed out of doors"

That means if sound escapes the building when a door is opened, the cops would have shut it down.

Regardless, the idea of banning all outdoor amplified music just because one bar and one neighborhood have a problem is asinine. I'm glad someone finally realized that, but I'm certain they'll come up with something equally stupid in response.

Anonymous said...

The real issue is Patsy Kinsy an elected official harrassing local business owners. She should resign! The citezens of Charlotte should be outraged at her behavior.

Grandpaw said...

Glad to see them stop all that hippie music so Gladys and me can hear Lawrence Welk!

Anonymous said...

I hate this city council. Can we make this city any less attractive to young professionals? Too much fun is bad? Is that what this city council is trying to say

Anonymous said...

I was born and raised in Charlotte. I have a masters degree and I'm being dragged back. I really loathe this place because of stuff like this law trying to get passed. I really hate this city trying to stifle the tiny night life it does have.

Jimmy C said...

We wonder why no real musicians come to Charlotte. I think this law is exactly why for a city as large as it is, has no good music shows. Patsy Kinsy, please move to the arboreteum or Ballantyne and get out of the city if you hate, SOUND. That is kinda what comes with city life.

Anonymous said...

How ironic. Let's have more walkable communities as long as it is quiet! So TIDY TOWN!

Anonymous said...

You can be as loud as you want, but if you have illegal skee ball, better watch out, they bring out the SWAT team with flashbang grenades!

Anonymous said...

Let's be honest here. The problem neighborhood is Elizabeth. And Kinsey is acting more like a neighbor (she lives there) than a leader.

But in Kinsey's very own district, a "one-size-fits-all" solution doesn't work. The very lively business areas of Plaza-Central and NoDa are also in District 1. And there, virtually no one is complaining. Indeed, music has helped bring back these old-storefront districts close to bungalows.

I also wonder if McCarley realizes Council just passed a conflicting law, which allows nightclubs in Plaza-Central within 225 feet of residences, not 400 feet as this supposed "noise" ordinance suggest.

Seems a citywide solution won't work, let alone a single solution for Kinsey's District 1.

Anonymous said...

If you don't like the music, play some you do like and drown out the noise down the street.

I guess people feel they have a right to live in a quiet world, but I disagree.

Mark Caplan said...

How anyone can call that thumping sonic equivalent of a dog's breakfast "music" is the first mystery. The second mystery is where you get the right to stop me from reading, conversing, or even listening privately to actual music of my own choosing in my own house.

Anonymous said...

City officials - dont worry about the noise issue - you can always send out the code officials to harrass neighborhood taverns with your rediculous liscenses. Skee-ball? Karaoke? Really?

Jack said...

This is sort of like defunding NPR. There are more pressing issues to be addressed than banning outdoor music. And that 400-foot rule needs to go as well if council revises this.

Last summer Piedmont Town Center off Fairview held regular mid-week rock band concerts to draw folks to the many fine restaurants in that area. A stage was set up at the west end of the traffic circle, with amplifiers facing away from the residential neighborhood just to the west. Those houses are probably slightly less than 400 feet away.

So now events that benefited both businesses and citizens could be banned - unless the stage is moved to the east end of the circle to escape the distance rule, and speakers pointed directly at the homeowners! Just doesn’t make sense.

Anonymous said...

This city is run by fascists who want Charlotte to be the civic equivalent of Walt Disney World. Lots of shiny, expensive toys to keep the visitors entertained, and the arbitrarily-written rules are enforced with an iron fist. God help you if you're an employee of Walt Charlotte World (i.e., a taxpayer) -- you get to pay for EVERYTHING.

It's only when enough people rise up in protest against their fascistic policies that things don't get MORE screwed up than they already are.

Anonymous said...

The best part of this whole thing, is that Patsy lives a couple of blocks from the bars and the other direction from her house is a HOSPITAL! This isn't some sleepy little town. If you want peace and quiet, go move to the country or the woods.

Next she'll be targeting the ambulances to turn down the emergency sirens.

JAT said...

If Mac wants anyone to take him remotely seriously, he needs to have his new language up for public consumption by 5pm today. If it is in his computer, it COULD BE on the web for ALL to see.

Otherwise, just another bait-and-switch by city staff with active contempt for those who pay their salaries.

Anonymous said...

Mark Caplan,
Your opinion of what is and isn't music isn't appreciated by anyone other than yourself. That statement labels you as an elitist snob.

Second, if music from a bar down the street stops you from reading or conversing or listening to your own music, you need to either move or learn how to concentrate or buy some headphones. You aren't entitled to silence whenever you want it - I checked the Constitution and there is no such right.

There are laws and codes already in place limiting noise levels by volume and time of day and they are reasonable. You chose to live in the city. If you don't like the noise that comes with that choice, move to the suburbs.

Anonymous said...

Has Mac even bothered to look at what other cities do with noise ordinances? How about Atlanta? Nashville? Hell, even Chapel Hill.

Anonymous said...

Kinsy is a joke, move to ballantyne if you hate noise so much.

Clay R said...

I agree with above lets see what cities like Austin, and Nashville do to handle the noise. I'm sure they are too dumb though to do that, the plan will most likely just push everything back one more hour and a hundred more feet. I really don't want a city lawyer to decide when and where I can listen to music outdoors. That is because he wouldn't be qualified.

Anonymous said...

District 1 voters rememeber democrat Kinsy during the election. Maybe it's time the voters elected someone that can concern themselves with more important issues.

Anonymous said...

That mess you people call music scares me. My dog barks all crazy and starts nipping at my wife.

Anonymous said...

Interesting that some are suggesting those who want a quieter atmosphere should move to the suburbs. That's what many of us did. But many on Mary's blog (including Mary)don't like that either. We're all supposed to be happy living in a dense urban environment.

So if you really prefer not to hear a lot of noise but it's not PC to live in the suburbs what's a person to do? If we're all going to live in an urban environment whose rights should prevail?

Anonymous said...

You have to understand somethings...
1). Some people live to complain. It's just in their DNA.
2). Rich white people think that ANYTHING they don't like should be banned.
3). This is easier than dealing with real problems. It's much easier to do this so that the likes of Patsy Kinsey can spend more time(not to mention more of our tax dollars) hob-knobbing with her elitist circle.
BTW, I used to work with her at a firm here in Charlotte. She is one of those "I know whats best for everyone else" type of people. And she had a picture of her meeting Bill Clinton on proud display for anyone who stepped foot in her office.