It’s a Crime to Emit Loud Noises
S.952 would prohibit individuals from emitting a noise beyond the bounds of their property that “unreasonably interferes with the enjoyment of life or with any lawful business or activity”. Just what unreasonable interference means would be defined by the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) which would adopt regulations setting limits on noise emissions. DHEC would also be tasked with prescribing “requirements and standards for equipment and procedures for monitoring noise and the collection, reporting, and retention of data resulting from such monitoring.”
Individuals convicted of violating this proposed law would be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to up to a $200-$500 fine and/or up to 30 days imprisonment for a first offense, or subject to a $500-$1,000 fine and/or up to one year imprisonment for a second offense. The law would contain an exemption for organized amateur or professional sporting activity.
We don’t need more laws turning peaceful citizens into criminals. And we certainly don’t need state government officials spending time and money to regulate noise monitoring equipment, or the procedures for monitoring and reporting on noise data. Peaceful non-government resolutions should be encouraged for noise dispute resolution, and to the extent that these fail, these disputes can become a matter for local not state government.