CAVE CITY — A group of residents who live along Grinstead Mill Road are fed-up with the noise coming from one neighboring residence.
They came to the Cave City City Council meeting Monday night to talk to city leaders about the problem and to ask for a noise ordinance to be created.
Jeremy Gray, a Grinstead Mill Road resident, read from a prepared statement. He began by telling city council members that he had brought him with not only Grinstead Mill Road residents, but others who are effected “by the extreme noise, which originates from the residents at 209 Grinstead Mill Road.”
The noise is coming from demolition-type lawn mowers and cars — the construction of them, as well as the crashing of them head-on into one another and into trees, plus loud music playing from the residence's garage.
“This noise effects not only us who live on Grinstead Mill Road, but several of our neighbors who live on White Street, Doyle Street, the retirement community at the end of Doyle Street and Mammoth Cave Street,” Gray said. “Many of of these individuals are long-time homeowners and are retired and like my mother have health problems. For three years and eight months we have dealt with this problem, so we appeal to our elected officials to create a noise ordinance to prevent such activity from occurring in close residential areas.”
Gray continued that the police have been called numerous times to the residence and the noise subsides for a short while, but soon returns to “the same noisy activity, and usually out of spite, a little bit louder.”
“The creation of a noise ordinance will allow law enforcement the authority to oppose appropriate fines or penalties for such behavior,” he said.
On a couple of occasions, Mayor Dwayne Hatcher has spoken to Gray's mother about the problem and had City Manager Robert Smith to look up zoning regulations and other things. He also said he invited City Attorney Bobby Richardson to prepare an ordinance to address the issue.
Councilman Larry Davidson thought the city already had a noise ordinance, but Richardson said no one was able to find a copy of it.
“I took a stab at doing something that might provide some relief,” Richardson said.
He proceeded to read a draft of what could become a noise ordinance that prohibits noise in residential zoned areas, including loud music, between the hours of 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Richardson explained the reason he set the hours at night.
“If you don't watch out, you will fix it where people can't even mow their yard,” he said. “You've got a fine line to walk there. That's my thoughts on it. I will write it any way anybody says. I'm trying to make one that is legal and reasonable and can be enforced.”
Councilman John Grissom then asked if it would include fireworks.
“We may need to tweak it,” Richardson said, adding that the city council could take it home and review it before voting to approve it.
“This is a starting point and we certainly understand your point,” Hatcher said.
The city council talked about city sponsored events, such as lawn mower pulls, that may create a lot of loud noise, but Hatcher said he doubted that would be something people would object to, however, if such noise is occurring on a daily basis then he understands that it is a problem.
The mayor also said he, too, has been approached about the fireworks issue and asked if there should be a separate ordinance addressing that type of noise.
Grissom said he thought the city needed a noise ordinance.
“As far as I'm concerned Cave City needs to go dark at 10 o'clock,” he said. “... I think it needs to apply to everything.”
Hatcher said the city council will take the creation of a noise ordinance into consideration.
“We have a starting point. We will definitely bring it back. One thing about our police officers, … they do a great job. They've gone over there several times. They have done what they can do legally, but we will take a look at this and definitely get together and see what we can come up with,” he said.
The mayor told residents that it will take some time to “come up with something that will have some bite in it so to speak. We can sit here and just haphazardly pass something but if it's not something that's not going to have some bite into it and can be enforced then we are wasting our time. We are going to try to address it and do the best we can to come up with something that will hopefully solve the problem.”
He continued that a committee will put together a committee that will include the police chief to discuss the issue this week.
In other business, the city council approved on first reading an ordinance prohibiting the use of exhaust or jake brakes within the city limits; approved an inter-local agreement with the Barren River Drug Task Force; approved a $10,000 no interest loan to Cliff and Sandie Geralds to be paid back over a 24-month period for use in helping to cover the cost to repave and stripe the parking lot of their property in the 800 block of Mammoth Cave Road; awarded a $400 bid to sell a Hyundai station wagon as surplus property to Joey Judd; agreed to allow Cave City Police Chief Darrell Butler to check into a firing range membership for the police department at a cost of $300 per year; agreed to purchase a 2017 Ford vehicle, which has a rebuilt title, for the police department at a cost of $16,006; and adopted a resolution to apply for a grant through the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security for use in purchasing Tasers.