During the warm weather months, I love to open the windows and let the breeze in. After being cooped up for several winter months, it's great to have the window open again. That is, until the noises of the neighborhood kick in.

Not that I'm a 'Get off my lawn ' type of person...or am I? If you live in the country, I envy you. Living in the urban areas of the Triple Cites with the windows open isn't always the best thing when it comes to noise.

Don't get me wrong, I don't mind the sounds of adults and kids in the neighborhood as they enjoy a nice spring and summer day.

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I'd rather not have to hear neighbors screaming and yelling at each other, which has happened in the past, and the sound of a neighbor's vehicle that was conveniently installed with a very loud muffler to make it sound cool. It's not cool.

Lawnmowers, on the other hand, are a welcome sound. It reminds me of an early Saturday morning when I was a child, living in a small town in the western part of the Southern Tier. It meant a sunny weekend full of fun was about to be had.

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Since we are on the subject of noise and lawnmowers (and other power equipment), if you reside in Binghamton, did you know this? According to 'Chapter 292, Noise' of the City of Binghamton Government website, the noise control ordinance has some rules you may not be aware of. Here is one:

  • Noise from domestic power tools, lawnmowers, and agriculture equipment, when operated with a muffler, is allowed only between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. on weekdays and 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. on weekends provided that they produce less than 85 dBA at or within any real property line of a residential property.
  • Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of an offense and, upon conviction thereof, shall be subject to penalties in the following manner:

    A. Upon a first conviction: by a fine not less than $50 and not more than $250 or by imprisonment for a period not to exceed seven days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
    B. Upon a second conviction: by a fine not less than $100 and not more than $1,000 or by imprisonment for a period not to exceed 10 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
    C. Upon a third or subsequent conviction: by a fine not less than $250 and not more than $3,000 or by imprisonment for a period not to exceed 15 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
    D. If the violation is of a continuing nature, each eight-hour period during which it occurs shall constitute an additional, separate, and distinct offense.

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