Pandora's gets shut down at 9:30 due to Coconut Radio's "loud music"....

Discussion in 'Music and Nightlife' started by weatabix, Apr 26, 2009.

  1. Groovegirls

    Groovegirls Beach Fanatic

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    Kim, of the Walton Sun, told me that the ordinace was up for a vote soon so I called the county and here is what I know. On May 11 at the Courthouse Annex at 4:00 there will be a public meeting for the purpose of reviewing and commenting on the new Noise Ordinance before putting it to a BOARD vote. You will not have a vote so be there to make your opinion known before the vote. I am working on getting a copy today and anyone can get a copy from the Clerk's office. I will post if I can figure out how. I may have to email one of you to post it for us.
     
  2. Miss Kitty

    Miss Kitty Meow

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    You Rock and Roll! :clap:
     
  3. Groovegirls

    Groovegirls Beach Fanatic

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    As much as I would like to take credit, they have been following this thread and found me in order to find some of you. Let's see what the new ordinance looks like. Hopefully this will be over. If not, CNN here we come.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2009
  4. sunspotbaby

    sunspotbaby SoWal Insider

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    They've got my number. The Kitty is right, ya'll rock! (we all knew this to be true):wave:
     
  5. weatabix

    weatabix Beach Lover

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    we will be there on the 11th.....Thanks to all who have posted on here and made their voices heard....Hopefully this won't happen again and we can continue to help make Walton County a great place!....Steve and Sue (Coconut Radio)
     
  6. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I think this is long from over, because as I understand it, they were proposing adopting the Grayton Ordinance as the County-wide Ordinance because it worked so well.

    My hope is that the County peeps read the numerous verdicts from higher Courts which state that the ordinance cannot be subjective, such as the one in Grayton. Google could be their friend.
     
  7. wrobert

    wrobert Beach Fanatic

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    Other than David Kramer, no one will more than likely even realize what is going on. Why? Because these laws are passed all the time and not enforced north of the bay. One day that will change, and when it does, you will see the law go away, I imagine.
     
  8. slcooper1949

    slcooper1949 Beach Lover

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    Pandoras closing


    yep!!!! He has his rights just like you do!!!
     
  9. wrobert

    wrobert Beach Fanatic

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    Drive by posters......ugh!


    So his rights supersede my rights, eh?
     
  10. jodiFL

    jodiFL Beach Fanatic

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    Whos opinion is it that it is working so well. Certainly not most of the folks around here.

    Just replaced the ink cartridges in my printer so they might just get copies of any rulings that I happen upon while visiting my buddy, Google.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2009
  11. Miss Kitty

    Miss Kitty Meow

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    Has the music resumed at Pandora's? I'd like to go back and will promise to use my inside voice, outside.
     
  12. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    JodiFL, I'm not sure whose opinion it is that the Grayton Ordinance "works so well." I say that only because they are looking to it as the model. It probably "works well" for the enforcement, Code Enforcement is closed on the weekends and at night, and I'm sure the Sheriff's Office hates the idea of spending valuable money on training the Deputies to be certified in the use decibel meters, as well as responding to complaints of music and noise coming from entertainment businesses.

    FYI - the search term which provided me with several court cases was "noise ordinance unconstitutional." (not in quotes) I'm sure you can find more Court rulings by opening your seach a bit.

    I have prior obligations on this upcoming meeting date. Does anyone know who is spear-heading this group of "leaders" who are running this meeting and drafting the proposed ordinance? Please post here if you do, for those of us unable to attend. We'd love to also have their email addresses so that we all can write in.
     
  13. jodiFL

    jodiFL Beach Fanatic

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    Not sure of my schedule at work yet but I would love to be there just to look around the crowd. I am sure that we would be able to find the person/persons that is/are making all the complaints in the crowd. Surely they wouldnt miss a chance like that to be vocal to the authorities. Hopefully I can be at this meeting and ask a few questions and show them a few rulings about vague noise ordinances. Maybe they will see that if they do adopt one that it better be a good one, even better than the Grayton one, and worded properly so that EVERYONE, including the sheriffs dept. can understand it.
     
  14. weatabix

    weatabix Beach Lover

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    Yes it has....and from what I understand the bands have been playing outside too! This is not in defiance either, it is simply what Pandora's has been doing all along.....Seems they haven't had a call yet this week, but then again maybe the complainer is out-of-town, who knows? I was interviewed by the Walton Sun yesterday along with probably many others as to what happened on that Saturday night....I think getting this injustice out in the public eye is what it needs! Nobody wants to look bad, so maybe the powers that be will play by the rules from now on......Support your local venues!!!
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2009
  15. Will B

    Will B Moderator

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    I didn't know you had an inside voice! :funn:
     
  16. sunspotbaby

    sunspotbaby SoWal Insider

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    It's inside her head.:D
     
  17. Miss Kitty

    Miss Kitty Meow

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    Well, that is music to my ears! I'll mosey on over!

    :floor:...my peeps love it when I come down with laryngitis!

    :rolling:...so that's what is taking up all that space!

    Hope to see a bunch of y'all at Pandora's this weekend! :wave:
     
  18. Groovegirls

    Groovegirls Beach Fanatic

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    Ok. Here is the proposed ordinance. It looks like they tried real hard to get this right but I see a few problems. The biggest in my opinion is the fact that the complaintant gets to be anonymous. I feel like we need to be able to verify the validity of the claim. Here it is. See what you think. MAY 11 at 4:00 at the courthouse annex. Be there to voice your opinion!

    ORDINANCE 2009-__
    AN ORDINANCE OF WALTON COUNTY, FLORIDA; REPEALING ORDINANCES 1996-15 AND 1997-30 RELATING TO THE CONTROL AND ABATEMENT OF EXCESSIVE NOISE IN GRAYTON BEACH, CHAPARREL ESTATES, HIDDEN HARBORS, AND HOLIDAY SHORES; PROVIDING FOR AUTHORITY; PROVIDING FOR APPLICABILITY; PROVIDING DEFINITIONS; PROVIDING FOR GENERAL PROHIBITION; PROVIDING FOR MEASUREMENT OF NOISE; PROVIDING FOR VIOLATION PROCEDURES; PROVIDING FOR PENALTIES; PROVIDING FOR JUDICIAL CONSTRUCTION; SEVERABILITY; AND AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
    WHEREAS, the Board of County Commissioners of Walton County (the “Board”) finds that excessive and unnecessary noise interferes with the quality of life and can interfere with the health, safety, and general welfare of the public; and

    WHEREAS, in particular, excessive and unnecessary noise can cause adverse psychological and physiological effects on humans; and

    WHEREAS, the Board finds it is in the best interests of the health, safety, and welfare of the people of Walton County to establish reasonable regulations for the abatement of excessive and unnecessary noise.

    NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED by the Board of County Commissioners of Walton County, Florida that:

    1. Repealer Clause: Walton County Ordinances 1996-15 and 1997-30, codified as Article V. Divisions 2 and 3 of the Walton County Code, is hereby repealed in its entirety.

    2. A new Article V. Division 2 of the Walton County Code is hereby created to read:

    DIVISION 2. COUNTY-WIDE

    Section 9-136. Authority. The authority for the enactment of this Ordinance is Section 125.01, Florida Statutes, and the State Constitution.

    Section 9-137. Applicability. This Ordinance shall be applied only to facilities and operations about which an affected person has lodged a complaint with an authorized enforcement agent or agency within the unincorporated areas of Walton County.

    Section 9-138. Definitions. For the purpose of this ordinance, certain words and phrases used herein are defined as follows:
    Noise shall mean any sounds or vibrations which annoy or disturb humans or cause or tend to cause adverse psychological effects on humans, and which may be harmful or injurious to the health or welfare of a reasonable person with normal sensibilities or unreasonably interfere with the normal conduct of life, use of property, or outdoor recreation.
    Officer means a Walton County Sheriffs Department Officer or Walton County Code Enforcement Officer.
    Person means any individual natural person, public or Private Corporation, firm, association, joint venture, partnership, or any other entity whatsoever or any combination of such, jointly and severally. Person shall include any owner, agent, or employee of a business establishment or other entity.
    Plainly Audible means any noise that can be heard by a person using normal hearing faculties, at a distance of fifty (50)feet or more from the real property line of the source of the noise.
    Real property line means an imaginary line along the ground surface, and its vertical plane extension, which separates the real property owned, rented or leased by one person from that owned, rented or leased by another person, excluding intrabuilding real property.

    Section 9-139. General Prohibition. It shall be unlawful and a violation of this ordinance to make, continue or cause to be made or continued any noise disturbance which:
    a. Produces or reproduces noise in a manner to be plainly audible between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., at a distance of fifty (50) feet or more from the real property line of the property from which the source of the noise is located; or

    b. Produces or reproduces noise in a manner to be plainly audible within a fully enclosed single-family dwelling at any time at a distance of three hundred (300) feet or more from the real property line of the property from which the source of the noise is located. A single-family dwelling shall have all windows and doors securely closed in order to be considered fully enclosed.

    Section 9-140. Measurement of Noise. A Walton County Sheriffs Department Officer or Walton County Code Enforcement Officer who hears a noise that is in violation of Section 9-139 shall measure the noise according to the following standards:

    a. The primary means of detection shall be by means of the officer’s normal hearing faculties.

    b. The officer must have a direct line of sight and hearing to the real property of the source of the noise so that the officer can readily identify the offending source of the noise and the distance involved. If the officer is unable to have a direct line of sight and hearing to the real property of the source of the noise, then the officer shall confirm the source of the noise by approaching the real property suspected of being the source of the noise until the officer is able to obtain a direct line of sight and hearing, and identify the identical or same noise that was heard at the place of original measurement of the noise.

    Section 9-141. Exemptions. The following are exempt from the provisions of this Ordinance:

    a. The unamplified human voice.
    b. Railway locomotives or cars.
    c. Bona fide agricultural equipment used for a bona fide agricultural purpose.
    d. Maintenance of public facilities.
    e. Law enforcement activities, including training.
    f. Outdoor hunting or hunting sports. The discharge of firearms in rural areas in the normal course of legal hunting activities or customary shooting sports such as skeet, trap, and target shooting.
    g. Emergency signals.
    h. Refuse collection vehicles.
    i. Organized athletic contests or sporting events.

    Section 9-142. Violation procedures.

    (1) Complaint procedures; warnings.
    a. When a complaint is received, officer shall promptly investigate the charges. The person making the complaint will not be required to identify himself/herself and may remain anonymous.

    b. When an officer determines that the noise emanating from a piece of property is in violation of Section 9-139, the officer shall issue an official warning to (1) the person or persons responsible for compliance with this ordinance and (2) the person or persons making the actual noise. The warning shall state the violation, shall advise the offenders to cease and desist the violation, and shall advise of the possible penalty if the person or persons fail to eliminate the noise or reduce the noise so that it is within permitted limits and is not plainly audible.

    c. The person or persons receiving the warning shall have five (5) minutes to comply with the warning.


    d. A warning issued under section 9-142(1)(b) is valid for a period of thirty (30) days, and such warning shall remain in effect against the offending person or persons for the same or similar type violations for a period of thirty (30) days.

    (2) Arrest; termination of offending noise.
    a. If the noise is not eliminated or reduced to allowable limits within five (5) minutes after the warning, or if the noise is abated after warning and then reoccurs within thirty (30) days, the person so warned and not complying shall be arrested for a violation of this ordinance and upon conviction shall be subject to the penalties designated in Section 9-143.

    b. If an arrest is made, the officer shall have the power and authority to immediately terminate the cause of the offending noise, including prohibiting any further noise from musical instruments or mechanical or electronic sound-making devices or equipment for a period of twenty-four (24) hours.

    (3) Joint and several responsibilities. The owner of the business, tenant/lessee of property, or a manager, overseer, agent, or any other person lawfully entitled to possess the property or manage the business premises from which the offending noise is emitted at the time the offending noise is emitted shall be jointly and severally liable for compliance with this ordinance and each shall be punished for its violation as shall the person or persons actually causing such noise. It shall not be a lawful defense to assert that some other person caused the noise. The lawful possessor, manager, or operator of the premises shall be responsible for operating or maintaining the premises in compliance with this ordinance shall be applied to such person or persons as well as to the person or persons actually causing the noise.

    Section 9-143. Penalties.
    a. All violations of this Ordinance shall be investigated, cited, processed, adjudicated and punished in the same manner as a misdemeanor, in accordance with F.S. 125.69. Upon conviction, a violator may be punished by a fine not to exceed $500.00 or by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed 60 days, or by both fine and imprisonment, for each violation.
    b. The imposition of a fine under this section shall not prevent the county or a private person from instituting a civil action at law for damages or injunctive relief in order to prevent or abate violations of this ordinance. A violation of this ordinance is declared to be a public nuisance.

    Section 9-144. Judicial Construction. NO provision of this noise ordinance shall be construed to impair any common law or statutory cause of action, or legal remedy there from.

    3. Should any word, phrase, sentence, or section of this ordinance be held by a court of competent jurisdiction to be illegal, void, unenforceable, or unconstitutional, then such shall be severed from this ordinance and the remainder of the ordinance shall remain in full force and effect.
    4. This ordinance shall take effect as provided by law.

    Adopted by the Board of County Commissioners of Walton County, Florida, at a duly advertised public hearing, this _______ day of _____________________2009.


    BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
    OF WALTON COUNTY, FLORIDA

    By:________________________________
    Sara Comander, Chair
    ATTEST:

    ________________________
    Martha Ingle, Clerk of Court
     
  19. wrobert

    wrobert Beach Fanatic

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    If the complaint is not anonymous then that just furthers the neighbor vs. neighbor argument. How do you get around that when neighbors use these sort of ordinances to harass each other? I like the line of sight thing, the only house you can see from mine is my Mother's, yet the neighbor to the west of me had been operating some sort of manufacturing facility for years. Noise going on all hours of the day and night.

    I wonder though if I can complain about the noise them silly cargo planes make flying over the house at all hours. They are really the only thing I hear and that is just cause they wake up the hounds.
     
  20. Groovegirls

    Groovegirls Beach Fanatic

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    While I understand the reason not to dislcose the identity of the complaintent especially in the heat of the moment, I think the accused deserve the right to verify the validity of the complaint. The information should be available at least on a statistical level. Also, If I go to jail, do I not have the right to all information pertaining to my case? In other words, I don't want to perpetuate or aggrivate any situation. I want to be able to verify if the person who called really lives near the "disturbance" and if the complaint was justified. I have no personal problem with anyone who truly has a valid complaint. I do want to be sure that any complaint lodged is legitimate.

    Yes you can complain about the planes but I don't think anything can be done. Not an amplified sound. I did notice that people talking is ok. I always wondered if the people on the porch at Salty Dog were the source of the offensive noise. I also realized that this ordinance is irrelevant since disturbing the peace applies very broadly and way outside of the ordinance. This is a tough problem to solve. That is why everyone should be at the meeting on May 11. It won't be easy but we will eventually get it settled.
     

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