County may loosen noise rule for dirt bikes

Tue, 08/07/2007 - 4:43pm
By: John Munford

The Fayette County Commission may soon undertake a review of its noise ordinance, which Commissioner Eric Maxwell said Wednesday may be too restrictive.

The ordinance was adopted in March 2005 and sets the decibel limit for residential areas at 55 decibels. The ordinance was developed largely in response to complaints from citizens in three areas of the county who lived near dirt motorcycle tracks that had been built on residentially zoned parcels.

Maxwell said at last Wednesday’s commission meeting that he was approached by resident Lynn Lovelace and asked to change the ordinance to a compromise that would allow his children to ride their motorcycles on their large parcel of property.

Commissioner Peter Pfeifer said the noise ordinance was adopted to protect residential property rights and he noted that one of the motorcycle tracks was near the edge of the property and not in the middle where it might have been less obtrusive.

Nevertheless, Commissioner Robert Horgan agreed with Maxwell that he’d like to see if there is some middle ground that could be reached. No official vote was taken on the matter.

In minutes of a 2005 commission meeting where the commission responded to criticism over the ordinance, it was noted that special equipment can be installed to control the noise on motorcycles.

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