24.02.040 Special provisions.
(a)Power Tools. The operation of power tools for noncommercial purposes shall be exempt from the provisions of sections 24.02.020(a),(b),(c) and 24.02.030, between the hours of nine a.m. and eight p.m.; provided, that such operations shall be subject to the provisions of section 24.05.010. For purposes of this section, a noncommercial use shall be any use for which a business license is not required pursuant to Chapter 19.
(b)Safety Devices. Aural warning devices which are required by law to protect the health, safety and welfare of the community shall be exempt from the provisions of this chapter.
(c)Emergencies. Emergencies are exempt from this chapter.
(d)Construction. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, between the hours of seven a.m. and seven p.m. on Mondays through Fridays, and between the hours of eight a.m. and eight p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, construction, alteration, repair or maintenance activities which are authorized by a valid city permit or business license, or carried out by employees or contractors of the city shall be allowed if they meet at least one of the following noise limitations:
(1)No individual piece of equipment shall produce a noise level exceeding eighty-three dBA at a distance of twenty-five feet. If the device is housed within a structure on the property, the measurement shall be made outside the structure at a distance as close to twenty feet from the equipment as possible.
(2)The noise level at any point outside of the property plane of the project shall not exceed eighty-six dBA.
(3)The provisions of subsections (1) and (2) of this subsection shall not be applicable to impact tools and equipment; provided, that such impact tools and equipment shall have intake and exhaust mufflers recommended by manufacturers thereof and approved by the director of public works as best accomplishing maximum noise attenuation and that pavement breakers and jackhammers shall also be equipped with acoustically attenuating shields or shrouds recommended by the manufacturers thereof and approved by the director of public works as best accomplishing maximum noise attenuation. In the absence of manufacturer's recommendations, the director of public works may prescribe such means of accomplishing maximum noise attenuation as he/she may determine to be in the public interest.
Construction projects located more than two hundred feet from existing homes may request a special use permit to begin work at 6:00 A.M. on weekdays from June 15th until September 1st. No percussion type tools (such as ramsets or jackhammers) can be used before 7:00 A.M. The permit shall be revoked if any noise complaint is received by the police department.
(e)Work Required for the Public Health and Safety. Work performed by city, city franchises, persons under contract with the city for repairs or maintenance of roads, water wells, water or service lines, street sweeping, garbage removal, and similar activities are exempt from this chapter.
(f)Powered Blowers. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, the private or commercial operation of powered blowers will be limited between the hours of 8:00 A.M. and 7:00 P.M. on Mondays through Fridays; between the hours of 9:00 A.M. through 5:00 P.M. on Saturdays and shall not be operated commercially on Sundays and holidays. Private operation for single family dwellings and single-family dwellings within a Planned Development district, including condominiums, as defined in Chapter 24 of this code, shall be allowed to operate powered blowers on Sundays and holidays from 11:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.
(1)No individual powered blower shall produce a noise level exceeding 70 dBA measured at a distance of fifty (50) feet.
(2)No powered blowers shall be operated within one hundred (100) feet radius of another powered blower simultaneously.
(3)On single-family residential property, the 70 dBA at fifty (50) feet restriction shall not apply if operated for less than ten (10) minutes per occurrence.
(4)All gasoline powered leaf blowers operated for commercial use must be tested and certified annually, by the City or their designee. The commercial use of any non-certified leaf blower is prohibited. Testing and certification procedures are pursuant to City policy, as approved and updated, by the City Manager. No individual powered blower used for commercial purposes shall produce a noise level exceeding 75 dBA measured at a distance of one hundred (100) feet in an open field environment. This decibel level includes an adjustment for environmental ambient background noise of 10 dBA. All other conditions in this section shall continue to apply, with the exception of (1).
(g)Preexisting Agricultural Activity, Operation, Facility, or Appurtenance Thereof.
(1)No agricultural processing activity, operation, facility or appurtenances conducted or maintained for commercial purposes and in a manner consistent with proper and accepted customs and standards, shall become a nuisance, private or public, due to any changed conditions in or about the locality, after the same has been in continuous operation for more than three years after January 1, 1990, if it was not a nuisance at the time it began.
(2)To ensure that development adjacent to preexisting agricultural activity, operation, facility, or appurtenance thereof does not result in a significant impact on the noise environment, land development policies will be required, but are not limited to:
(A) If residential development encroaches on preexisting agricultural activity in operation before January 1, 1990, the city shall cause to have prepared a site map identifying existing noise levels and delineating existing noise contours. A 60 CNEL noise contour line shall be defined as the boundary for all new residential development adjacent to said agricultural activity.
(B) New development within the 60 CNEL contour line adjacent to an existing agricultural use shall be limited to land uses conforming to the city noise requirements based on the specific decibel level incurred.
(C) Policies for new projects proposed adjacent to existing agricultural activities, operations, or facilities, or appurtenances thereof, including but not limited to: Ricci Farm in South Davis; the Simmons property in East Davis; and current agricultural activities adjacent to the existing urban edge. Land development policies may include, but are not limited to defining specific mitigation measures such as sound walls, landscaping, berms, and construction standards. The city will also require the establishment of a disclosure agreement for development adjacent to existing agricultural activities that will constitute a private contractual agreement to ensure that future adjacent homeowners are aware of the noise impacts associated with living in close proximity to such facilities, and that such impacts have been mitigated to the maximum extent possible.
Policies regulating development adjacent to existing agricultural operations that meet the criteria of AB 1190 shall be implemented on a case by case basis as deemed appropriate through the project approval process.
(D) The city shall require the developer of property adjacent to an existing agricultural operation to notify homeowners of the potential exposure to noise sources and the protection of the agricultural operation from nuisance complaints as provided by AB 1190.
(E) Future development using open space as a noise mitigation measure (buffer) shall contribute on a fair share basis to financing development, construction and maintenance of said open space, recreational facilities, or greenbelts.
(h)Pre-Existing Agricultural Processing Plants (Hunt-Wesson Cannery).
(1)The provisions of AB 1190 (Chapter 97, Statutes of 1992), amending various provisions of the Civil Code of the state of California, provides that certain existing agricultural processing facilities do not constitute a nuisance as long as they continue to operate in a similar manner to that in which they have historically operated. The city council finds that such plants within the city meet the criteria of the legislation and finds that the provisions of this section are necessary to harmonize the provisions of the legislation with the requirements of the city to set noise standards for various activities in the city.
(2)The provisions of this section apply only to agricultural processing plants in operation prior to January 1, 1990, and then only in such areas of the sites on which such plants are located as are delineated on a map approved by the city council for that purpose and filed with the city clerk.
(3)In the event that noise emissions from an agricultural processing plant exceed those levels shown on the map applicable to such plant, or, if no levels are shown, then the levels that existed as of the effective date of the ordinance codified in this section, the following will occur:
(A) Notice. The city manager shall give written notice of the violation or violations to the owner of the plant, and to the operator, if different from the owner. As used thereafter, the term "owner" shall also be deemed to include operator.
(i)The notice shall specify the date(s) and time(s) of the violation(s) and the level of noise measured for each violation.
(ii)The notice shall provide that the recipient has until five p.m. on the next day of plant operations following service of the notice to take corrective action to insure that a similar violation or violations do(es) not occur in the future and to notify the city manager, in writing, of the corrective action taken. Service of the notice is complete upon delivery to the owner or his authorized agent at the plant.
(B) Corrective Action. The owner shall immediately take corrective action to insure that the violation(s) do(es) not reoccur and shall notify the city manager of the action taken.
(i)If corrective action is not taken as required by the notice from the city manager, the owner will pay a penalty of two thousand dollars per day, commencing from the date notice is given.
(ii)The daily penalty may, under emergency circumstances, be waived by the city manager for up to fifteen days if, after consultation with a recognized noise expert, retained by the city at the expense of the owner, it is shown that corrective action cannot reasonably be taken within the time specified in the notice because of the unavailability of parts or equipment to mitigate the violation.
(iii) The maximum fine for continuing successive daily violations shall not exceed one hundred fifty thousand dollars.
(D) Payment of Penalty—Lien. Any fine imposed hereby shall be paid to the city promptly on demand. If not paid within thirty days, the city may take action to make the same a lien on the property occupied by the plant, which shall be collectible together with any real property taxes applicable thereto.
(E) Other Enforcement Provisions Not Affected. The penalty provisions of this article are in addition to, and not in lieu of, any other provisions of this chapter pertaining to enforcement. In the event of any violation of this article, the provisions of sections 24.01.030 and 24.01.040 shall also apply.
(F) Penalty Amounts Indexed. The daily penalty set forth in subsection(g)(3)(C)(i) and the maximum penalty set forth in subsection (g)(3)(C)(iii) shall be increased on July 1st of each calendar year by the rate of inflation as determined by the Consumer Price Index (All Urban Consumers) (based years 1982-1984=100) for San Francisco=Oakland=San Jose CMSA. (Ord. No. 1700, § 1 (part); Ord. No. 1854, §§ 7—10; Ord. No. 1955 (part).)
(Ord. 1955, Amended, 07/29/1998)
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2006-06-02 08:50:50 "the private or commercial operation of powered blowers will be limited between the hours of 8:00 A.M. and 7:00 P.M. on Mondays through Fridays." Most students don't wake up at 8AM. My apartment complex starts blowing leaves at 8AM..argh. —PhilipNeustrom
2006-06-02 09:19:44 I was just looking for something like this...Our leaf blowers start early too....what's even worse is that currently there is construction going on right next to my effing window at The Lexington...and they start AT 7AM. I KNOW that stuff is louder than the decibel standards...I loathe them. —KarlaFung
2007-11-09 09:21:21 Can we please do something about banning leaf blowers in Davis? They pollute both sound-wise and air quality-wise. I think it is the sort of thing that could pass around here. Why can't they just pick up a rake like a normal person. —ErikKlemetti
2008-06-16 13:03:48 Be on the lookout: One specific violation they make is using more than one leaf blower at a time within 100-foot radius at the same time! That not only makes things dustier, but noisier too, which then helps them exceed the 70 dB noise limit as well. —condemned2bfree
2008-06-16 14:44:07 Maybe the city should require leaf blower users to get a permit. The city could charge a healthy fee, make some money to help fill the deficit from those who feel they must leaf-blow instead of raking, and give the leaf blowers an incentive to stop their noise and air pollution. The city commission is always going on about greenhouse gases. Here is an opportunity for them to do something about them. Leaf blowers cannot be justified. They pollute and waste fuel to do something that does not require anything more than a broom or a rake. Since the leaf blower lobby would likely claim an outright ban on leaf blowers would be an unconstituional taking- why not make them pay for their polluting and wasteful ways. —aharjala
Although I'm not a huge fan of leaf blowers (especially on Wednesday mornings when they come to my apartment complex and make it impossible to sleep) I'm sure they make professional landscapers' and gardeners' lives immensely easier than if workers had to use a broom or rake. If it takes them hours to rid the complex of leaves by leafblower, I can't imagine how long it would take to do it by rake, or the blisters it would cause. On the other hand, I'm not sure why it's necessary to clean up leaves every week, especially during the months when there aren't that many leaves on the ground. In any case, I like the idea of charging a leafblower fee. West Hollywood and several other California cities have actually banned the use of leafblowers... —ElleWeber
2009-01-05 21:39:28 It's Monday night, 9:32, and there are 2 leaf blowers next to my apartment complex downtown. You can hear them all over downtown from 7AM to 9PM pretty much every day. I'm more than willing to go like WeHo and ban them altogether. I will be contacting my city Representative this week and I'll report back.
Having done landscaping work myself, I sympathize with the landscaping community 100% on this - raking isn't easy work. However, the continuous noise and dust have become worse than having some leaves on the ground. —sjoe
Update: My email to a Mr. Heystek, Lamar was not returned. I'll try the next one on the list.
2009-01-06 11:36:21 I had similar problems to those listed here. After reading the regulations, I noticed two things the company conducting the leaf blowing was doing that were in violation. First, they used three leaf blowers at a time (when only one is allowed), and they were starting earlier than allowed. I called Pat Riley of the City Parks Dept. and he was immensely helpful. Don't be afraid to call him if you notice an infraction. Do not call him just to complain about how much you hate leaf blowers. His number is 757-5656. —condemned2bfree