Council To Consider Set Time For Noise Ordinance Variances

OSWEGO, NY – Port City bars that receive a variance to the noise ordinance to host outdoor live entertainment will have to tone it down earlier.

The Planning and Development Committee sent a recommendation to the full council Monday night that would restrict the hours local bars could allow outside bands to play.

A couple of weeks ago, a downtown bar owner asked for a variance. He wanted to be on a par with other taverns in the area.

However, the committee members were unsure just what hours and conditions were granted for all the other bars who have received a variance.

Councilor Dan Donovan, Fifth Ward, researched to see what the hours were for the previous resolutions.

“We said we were going to look and see what we allowed other establishments,” he explained.

The times have been 1:30 a.m., 11 p.m. and others for “special occasions.”

“So it’s been all over the place as far as times go,” he said.

Committee chair Mike Myers suggested setting parameters for future variances.

“It might behoove us to not only take a look at what the time is but locations as well … some of these are across from the hospital and at the edge of (residential) areas,” Councilor Connie Cosemento said. “No band should be outdoors playing where they are serving alcohol at 1:30 in the morning.”

Council Vice President Shawn Walker noted that some residents have told him that 11 p.m. would be a good time to have things quieted down. He added that he was inclined to agree with them.

“It is easiest for us to be fair, if we are fair in the same way to everyone,” Cosemento said. “Then they know what to expect.”

“For us to think there are no complaints (about the noise), is ludicrous,” she added. “Because there are always complaints. Is one complaint enough to deny someone? I don’t know; but, I think a reasonable time is what we need to shoot for here.”

Council President Ron Kaplewicz suggested 9:30 or 10 p.m. for Sunday through Thursday and 11 p.m. for the weekend (Friday and Saturday) for variances.

Any “special” events would be given consideration by the council for later time.

The police could shut down an event if they deem it too loud, Kaplewicz said.

That is the last resolve currently in all the resolutions for a variance, Donovan pointed out.

The full council will consider the matter at its Aug. 8 meeting.

If approved, the weekday hours would be 10 p.m. and the weekend 11 p.m. “from that day forward,” Myers said.

1 Comment

  1. While you are at it, could you set a noise ‘level’ for auto transmission of music? At my business I have an apartment. I know there is an apartment upstairs in at least three other businesses in my neighborhood. The deep bass that affects the human body (so much your heart actually skips a beat!) while the auto is at a light (a minute, two), is not comfortable at ‘all hours’ of the day and night. Even in the day, it can rattle windows, and what is it going to take to figure out that the car owner shouldn’t have more ‘rights’ than we do?

    WHY is there no ordinance regarding this? Why can’t the police take a complaint with the license plate number noted and the hour, and if enough complaints go through, the person gets ‘cited’ on their license (or higher in$urance rates might do the trick!), which I personally think would also do the trick for cell phone use (if you get into an accident, and your cell phone was in use, you pay more insurance!).

    For decades there WERE laws about noise in every city in America. But it seems that NOW in many cities, Oswego no exception, the decibel level has gone up and up even with emergency vehicles (I understand this one as lawsuits result if you don’t alert other drivers who are busy with those loud radios/and or talking on their phones), & mostly those car stereos (yeah, technological improvements!), and summer party noises. So we are a noisy, stressful society, and nobody can figure out what all that ‘anger that results in crime’ comes from…

    Personally, I think that summer parties at bars are the least of our worries. They are seasonal and short-lived. There is a LOT of other noise that makes life a lot less pleasant within the city of Oswego, and why anyone with any money at all moves to the burgs, or totally out of the area. Those of us who invested in our homes when the city was a more pleasant family friendly place, are now sort of stuck unable to unload our houses to buy our own piece of paradise in ‘glens or wood’ developments.

    So, I know I’d rather listen to a band play one night a week for an extra hour, than those raucous car radios any time of day or night. I personally think the music sounds nice on a summer night…but I’m only one, maybe. And I don’t go to bed at 9:30, so it probably doesn’t matter as much to me.

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