Putnam Commission votes to modify noise ordinance

WINFIELD, W.Va. — The Putnam County Commission has agreed to modify a previously enacted noise ordinance for unincorporated parts of the county.

The Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to increase the noise limit from 80 decibels to 99 decibels between the hours or 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Commission President Andy Skidmore said the previous limit was unreasonable.

“When we previously looked at this, we didn’t want to cause unnecessary police calls,” Skidmore said.

However, he said the low decibel level was probably lower than anybody understood.

“A personal issue in my neighborhood made me review this, look at it and actually buy a decibel meter. Kids playing outside is more than 80 decibels and there was somebody who had a problem with kids playing outside, making too much noise and enjoying themselves,” he said.

Commissioner Steve Deweese agreed the level at 80 decibels even put himself and a lot of residents of the county in violation.

“Just a lawnmower is 85 to 95 decibels and I have an industrial leaf blower, so I’m pushing 99 to 100 decibels during that period of time too, so I don’t foresee any issues of changing that to 99,” said Deweese.

The commissioners voted to raise the decibel level to 99 and extended the distance from a home from 100 to 250 feet.