Monday, April 15, 2013

Will Barclays Center be fined for noise violation from pounding bass? A hearing is tomorrow

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So, will the Barclays Center be fined $3200 for violating the city's noise code, as seemed obvious to many residents nearby the arena during the Sensation dance concerts last October?

After all, the city's Department of Environmental Protection took a reading that seemed to indicate the noise was way over permissible limits--and filed a notice of violation. (The agency did not, however, find violations, despite reports of leaking bass, during the Jay-Z concerts in late September and early October nor during the Green Day concert last week, despite a neighbor's report.)

Hearing tomorrow

A hearing on the proposed violation was scheduled for 4/2/13; while the parties did attend, a lawyer for the Barclays Center challenged a technicality in the notice of violation, and the hearing was rescheduled for tomorrow, 4/16/13, 1:30 pm, at the Environmental Control Board (ECB), 66 John Street, 10th Floor, in Lower Manhattan.

I've heard that fines for first offenses are often waived, but ECB spokeswoman Marisa Senigo said that "ECB judges are independent decision makers and there is no way to measure, nor does ECB track, what would be a 'typical' decision by an administrative law judge in any particular type of case."

An office, not a courtroom

The hearing room two weeks ago was a small office barely enough to fit the six participants and observers. What if more people attend?

"We would do our best to accommodate all members of the public who would like to attend (for example by choosing the largest room we have or perhaps one at the end of a hallway where people could sit outside the room) but of course, I cannot promise that there will be space for everyone," Senigo said.

She noted that the administrative law judge does not issue the decision on the day of hearing and members of the public can only observe, not participate.

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