Noise Bill to Get Another Chance

Posted April 15, 2008 at 5:43pm

The daytime noise protection bill that the D.C. Council tabled in February was resurrected on Tuesday, with councilmembers voting unanimously to reconsider the bill on May 6.

Ward 6 Councilmember Tommy Wells (D) wrote the bill to combat preachers who used amplifiers at high volume on H Street Northeast. The preachers have since moved on to Gallery Place, but Wells and residents continued to push for the noise restrictions.

Residents generated considerable media attention in March when they bombarded the Georgetown home of Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans (D), who tabled the bill on Feb. 19, with a noisy protest early on a Saturday morning.

Labor unions, including the AFL-CIO, had argued that the bill would restrict their activities, but Wells was able to muster enough support to revive it.

“I’m very pleased that my colleagues supported this measure today,” Wells said in a statement. “We have worked hard to find a fix that is fair and provides some neighborhood protections.”

Wells’ chief of staff, Charles Allen, cautioned that Evans intends to offer amendments to the bill in May. Allen also noted that councilmembers’ votes to revive the bill don’t necessarily signal support for final passage.

— Daniel Heim