Saturday, June 01, 2002

Columbus-area noise ordinance to remain

The Associated Press

        COLUMBUS — An amendment which would have nullified a suburban community's anti-noise ordinance has been taken out of a bill before the Legislature.

        A Senate-House conference committee on Thursday eliminated the amendment from a measure increasing pay for local board of education members. The bill was sent to Gov. Bob Taft.

        The amendment would have nullified an agreement between Columbus and Westerville that sets the sound level from high-volume rock concerts at the Polaris amphitheater.

        Polaris is in Columbus; a nearby residential area is just inside Westerville.

        The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati ruled in October that the Westerville ordinance was constitutional after it was amended so that concerts couldn't be banned in advance. But Westerville has sued in Delaware County Common Pleas Court, requesting that concerts be banned this year if some performances exceed the prescribed noise level.

        House Speaker Larry Householder, R-Glenford, had the amendment inserted at the request of Polaris owners.

        Current law allows municipalities to regulate noise emanating from another jurisdiction, with the approval of the city where the source is located. Columbus agreed to allow Westerville to set the noise levels. The proposed amendment would override the agreement.


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