Proposed County Noise Ordinance Raises Noise on Social Media

A proposed noise ordinance in Miller County has some county citizens wanting to make some noise of their own. A planned prayer event will be held on the courthouse lawns at the next Quorum Court Meeting on March 13.

An ordinance proposed by the Quorum Court and currently under review would place noise level restrictions in the county on all citizens.  According to the ordinance, a violation will be “noise that is excessive, unnecessary, or unusually loud within the confines of Miller County which could annoy, disturb, injure, or endanger the comfort, peace, safety, or health of its residents or other persons.” The proposal lists potential fines starting with the first offense set at two hundred and fifty dollars.  The proposal does offer exemptions for certain events, including church meetings, athletic events, parades, as well as events obtaining an exemption. 

Citizens immediately took to social media to express support and opposition to the proposed ordinance.  Some comments called the proposal “unnecessary,’ or a “waste,” while others said it was needed.  From a casual review of the comments, it did appear a large number of people are opposed to the ordinance.  

Several people on social media contacted the Dancing Ranch Farm representative Ronnie Dancer. Dancer stated that many wanted to protest the ordinance at the next meeting but that it was proposed to have instead a prayer meeting outside the courthouse on the day of the event. Dancer said he wants people to talk with the JP members and express concerns about the ordinance or support for the ordinance. Dancer pointed out that events at Halloween and Veteran events with fireworks mean that the Dancing Ranch Farm could violate the ordinance if it goes into effect. The Dancing Ranch Farm has been in operation for a little over two years and has seen success in offering a safe environment for kids and teens to host events and parties. When asked if he could possibly obtain an exemption or waiver as noted under Section 4 of the proposed ordinance, Dancer said he had no way of knowing if an exemption or waiver would be granted or what the ordinance’s requirements for such an exemption or waiver constitutes.

Dancer and others plan to meet on the courthouse lawn on March 13th at 5:00 p.m. They play to pray and hopefully talk with some of the JPs about the ordinance. Dance said several people have already been contacting their respective JP representatives. He noted that telephone numbers and contact methods have been posted on social media and can be found on the county website.

Proposed Ordinance below: