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Long IslandTowns

Southold is trying to quiet things down

A view of the Peconic Bay from Bay

A view of the Peconic Bay from Bay Home Road in Southold. (Feb. 16, 2011) Credit: Erin Geismar

Shhh. Southold is adopting a noise ordinance.

Southold Town, the only Long Island town without a law regulating the amount of noise allowed, will hold a public hearing July 5 on the matter.

Supervisor Scott Russell said current town laws contain vague references to “unreasonable” noise, but the new law would enact specific decibel levels under described situations. 

The proposed law speaks to airborne, amplified, residential, commercial and construction noises. It specifically mentions lawn mowers, riding tractors, snowblowers and snowplows.

It specifies that airborne or amplified sound must not exceed a measurement of 65 dBA (decibels adjusted) from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

A lower level of 50 dBA is required from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. Friday and Saturday. 

The law excludes intermittent noise from homeowners using lawn mowers or snowblowers with proper mufflers, as well as commercial landscapers’ equipment, as well as noise from charitable or school events.

The proposal also excludes noise from agricultural equipment. 

The hearing is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at town hall.


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