Tampa city council passes new noise ordinance for businesses

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Many homeowners are happy while many Tampa bar owners are not.

After hours of debate on Thursday, the Tampa city council approved a new noise ordinance that means amplified sound will be limited city-wide after midnight. 

Carole Post is the administrator for development and economic opportunity for the city and says the ordinance seeks to strike a balance between homeowners and bar owners.

“We want our businesses to grow, to be vibrant and active and Residents also deserve to know when the music is going to stop and when they can have some peace and quiet,” Post said.

Jennifer Small lives in a condo in the South Howard Avenue area of Tampa and says on many nights, the noise is out of control.

“We can actually hear the DJ, over our television sets. We can hear base shaking our homes and this is a nuisance at any time of the day,” said Small.

She supports the ordinance, but bar owner Richard Boom says the ordinance goes too far.

“It actually would mean that if you stepped into your back yard after midnight and turned on a TV, you’d be in violation,” Boom who has owned and managed bars in Ybor since 1992 said.

He says the entertainment district of Ybor was in place long before some homeowners moved to the area.
He believes the ordinance would hurt business.

“Absolutely it would hurt businesses, yea because it’s so difficult, especially with these old buildings. You can’t retrofit them to be soundproof,” Boom said.

The ordinance does not go into effect for another six months.

Tonight the board asked city staff to meet explore amending the ordinance and come back at the April workshop with recommendations.

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