Marion County — Press Release — The Marion County Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday, June 16, adopted an ordinance that will address concerns related to noise and vibration control.
Following citizen input and workshops held on March 24, 2015, and May 19, 2015, the commission directed staff to schedule and prepare an amendment to Marion County Code Chapter 13, Noise and Vibration Control, typically referred to as the Marion County Noise Ordinance. The Board unanimously approved those changes following a public hearing during their regularly-scheduled meeting.
The amendments include adding the use of the “plainly audible” test and providing both code enforcement and law enforcement officers the ability to enforce, among others. “Plainly audible” means any sound that can be clearly heard by an officer using his normal hearing faculties without enhancement by any device, such as a microphone or hearing aid.
The County Commission said they had been receiving an increasing number of complaints from citizens in residential areas regarding noise disturbances, mostly related to loud music. Former sound measurement and enforcement procedures limited county code enforcement officers’ ability to provide relief to those.
“These are very positive changes for Code Enforcement officers, as well as law enforcement,” Marion County Growth Services Director Sam Martsolf said. “They will now have the tools needed to help citizens who are experiencing disturbances of their peace and quiet in residential areas across Marion County.”
A violation of section 13-910 shall be punished as provided in section 2-211 of the Marion County Code, as it may be amended.
A person who has been issued a citation shall be subject to a civil penalty.
Penalties are as follows:
- For the first violation, a warning to eliminate or abate the violation within a reasonable time.
- For the second violation, by a civil penalty of $100.00.
- For third and subsequent violations, by a civil penalty of $500.00.
The City of Ocala has its own ordinance.
For Ocala, the penalties are as follows:
- Punishable by a fine not exceeding $500.00 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 60 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment. Each day any violation of any provision of this Code or of any ordinance shall continue shall constitute a separate offense.
Ocala Police Officers have been known to write citations for noise ordinance violations.
The changes to the Marion County Noise Ordinance make it easier for Marion County Sheriff’s deputies to enforce the ordinance as well.