City Council Meeting - FINAL

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Meeting Date: 10/18/2022  
From: Paul Lasiewicki, Deputy Police Chief
Department: Police Department  

Nuisance Noise Ordinance Discussion
The noise study results and recommendations will be presented to City Council for consideration in drafting a City of Flagstaff Nuisance Noise Ordinance.
In October of 2019, a Flagstaff resident emailed the Mayor and Council to express his concerns about unnecessary noise pollution. The resident specifically pointed out a concern about vehicles equipped with “intentionally loud automobile mufflers” and went on to say “I can't count the number of times that I have been assaulted by blasts of noise from cars spewing their deep and threatening engine vibrato.  Their abuse can be heard, even felt, from blocks away”.
This email was followed up by a petition to the Flagstaff City Council containing 29 signatures titled “Intentional Noise Pollution”. This petition requested the city council consider the effects of noise pollution on the quality of life in Flagstaff. It asks the council to address the unnecessary noise created when drivers intentionally modify a vehicle for the sole purpose of increasing their noise footprint.
These concerns were presented to council during the June 1, 2021, regular council meeting. After the presentation the council voted to have an ordinance drafted to address nuisance noise.

An Ordinance was presented to Council on September 21, 2021. At the conclusion of that discussion Council requested a work session to further discuss a possible Ordinance.
On January 25 of this year, Police Department staff presented the proposed noise ordinance with different options for enforceable sound levels and qualities to Council for their consideration. At that time, Council directed the City to hire a consultant to conduct a sound study and provide recommendations for noise enforcement.
On June 22 MD Acoustics provided Police Department staff with a sound study report detailing their findings and recommendations.
The Flagstaff Police Department has facilitated several community outreach efforts, including two Coffee with a Cop events at local Southside coffee shops, a neighborhood meeting at the Murdoch Center, and a hybrid town hall at City Hall in an effort to share the results of the sound study, receive community feedback, and answer questions.
During this time citizens have additionally expressed concerns both to the Flagstaff Police Department and the Flagstaff City Council about loud noise emanating from businesses and causing disturbances in residential neighborhoods.  A Nuisance Noise Ordinance could address vehicle noise and nuisance noise in residential, business, and commercial zones. It will be a valuable tool in addressing nuisance noise complaints and provide for an objective means to measure the noise to determine if there is a violation.
MD Acoustics will share the sound study results and their recommendations with City Council.  City staff will share more information about the public outreach and feedback received during those interactions.
City staff will be prepared to answer questions and accept direction from City Council as to next steps in the process towards the creation of a City of Flagstaff Nuisance Noise Ordinance. 

The sound study and recommendations have been attached to the staff summary in two parts due to its size. You can also access the study and recommendations online at
Noise Study and Recommendations - Part 1
Noise Study and Recommendations - Part 2


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