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Greenport delays vote on noise code with board members concerned bill doesn’t achieve goal

In a split vote last Thursday, the Greenport Village Board opted to table a vote on amendments to the noise code, citing the need for more discussion.

“I am not comfortable that we’ve reached the goal that the business district and the residential district will be living in harmony next to each other,” said Trustee Mary Bess Phillips.

Trustees Julia Robins and Peter Clarke agreed. 

“There are multiple sides to this situation,” Ms. Robins said. “I don’t see a need to rush it through at this point.”

The proposed code would increase the fine structure for repeat noise violation offenders to $250 for the first, $1,000 for the second and $2,500 for the third. Businesses would also be required to obtain music permits through the village Planning Board. 

During an Aug. 20 work session, officials discussed concerns over a proposed 85 decibel limit for commercial properties that would be in effect on Friday and Saturday nights from 8 p.m. to midnight.

Trustees also raised concerns about how the code will be enforced.

Tricia Hammes, a member of the Greenport Planning Board, also urged the board to take a step back. “I am a little bit concerned and puzzled by what the Planning Board is supposed to be doing with respect to issuing music permits,” she said, questioning if all existing businesses would have to appear before the planning board to obtain the permits.

But Mayor George Hubbard Jr. said the decibel limits could be amended at a later date.

“95% of the law is actually what we wanted to accomplish,” he said, voting with trustee Jack Martilotta to oppose tabling the vote.