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Woodstock City Council tables vote on controversial noise ordinance

Mayor Brian Sager during a Woodstock City Council Meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019.
Mayor Brian Sager during a Woodstock City Council Meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019.

Woodstock City Council on Tuesday tabled a vote on a controversial noise ordinance.

Some residents have complained that summer events at Niko’s Red Mill Tavern, 1040 Lake Ave., and Kingston Lanes, 1330 S. Eastwood Drive, lead to noise pollution in the area.

“It’s a sustained noise,” said Mary Richards, one of the residents who brought the issue to the city’s attention last year. “It’s not just once in awhile. It’s pretty much Friday, Saturday and Sunday.”

The proposed noise ordinance would have barred noises – including from music, voices, construction or landscaping equipment, and radios, TVs and stereos – that are more than 62 decibels 100 feet from the source property line. The ban would be in effect 10 p.m. to 7 a.m., according to city documents.

But council members decided to postpone a vote because some felt the ordinance “wasn’t quite there.”

“The challenges are many in this process,” Mayor Brian Sager said. “I think we still need to work on some things.”

Niko Kanakaris, who owns the tavern, said he is working with a sound enginee-deadening wall.

“I want to work a solution out,” he said.

He said the bar and restaurant does about $3 million in sales annually and contributes to the city’s economy.

“In the last five years we have paid a little over $800,000 in sales tax,” he said. “I paid out $3-plus million in payroll over the last five years.”

Sager said he wanted to make sure people didn’t think the goal was to end concerts.

“It was never the intent of this at all,” he said. “We are trying to control the sound levels as they move out into residential areas. That is the point.”

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