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DEEP signs off on New Fairfield plainly audible standard, recommends decibel levels added

The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has reviewed New Fairfield's draft Noise Ordinance.  Selectman Khris Hall says DEEP approved the plainly audible standard, but is recommending the town add decibel levels back into the proposal. 

DEEP reviewed the document to confirm it's consistent with the state noise ordinance.  DEEP also shared the proposal with their Environmental Conservation Police to make sure they could also enforce it, given the provisions about Candlewood Lake. 

The ordinance defines daytime hours as being between 6am and 10pm, Monday through Saturday, and 8am and 10pm on Sundays and holidays.  Nighttime hours are 10pm and 6am, Sunday evening through Saturday morning, except for holidays.  Noise from Sound Reproductive Devices on or in a car or a boat can't be operated at a plainly audible level at a certain distance for a duration of more than 15 minutes in any 24 hour period. 

Any person living or doing business in New Fairfield may apply to the Director of Health for a variance from one or more of the provisions of the Noise Ordinance.  The Director may impose reasonable conditions on the granting of any variance. Denial of a variance may be appealed to the Board of Selectmen.

A commercial entity located within the business/commercial zone or having approved nonconforming status as a commercial entity is exempt between 5pm and 10pm on Sunday through Thursday, or until 11pm on Friday or Saturday nights.  The music volume must not be unreasonably loud.

Residents will vote August 29th at 2pm on whether or not to adopt the ordinance, though the location has not yet been determined.  According to the draft document, a first-time violation would be punished by a fine of up to $100, and second-time offense would result in a $150 fine. Each subsequent violation would result in a $250 fine.

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