NASSAU COUNTY, Fla. – Dozens held signs and rallied Tuesday night outside Fernandina Beach City Hall during a city commission meeting. It all had to do with a noise ordinance that has some business owners and other local residents concerned.
Fernandina Beach’s noise ordinance states that if you’re heard from 100 feet away, you can be fined.
Samuel McDonald says he depends on music to make a living. Now he’s nervous to play downtown.
“There’s a couple people that have been calling in here lately and using the way the ordinance is written now to get these certain businesses fined,” McDonald said.
City leaders have proposed setting the ordinance to 150 feet.
“If they do, it’s still prohibitive of outdoor live music in town,” said Thaxton Rowe.
The Green Turtle, a live music venue in Fernandina, posted on Facebook saying its moved live music inside. It also says bands will only perform until 10 p.m. on weekdays and until 11 p.m. on weekends.
The Boat House also posted on its Facebook page, saying “live music is being threatened.”
People who were at Tuesday’s rally said they’d like to have city leaders agree on an acceptable sound level for live music. Thaxton Rose, a musician, agrees.
“We’ve got to get it changed,” Rose said. “We’ve got to get a decibel level set.”