Mon. Aug 8th, 2022

Many people think that most of the residents who receive noise violations are students. However, Lt. William A. Morris of the West Chester Borough Police Department strongly says that this is not the case.”The majority of noise violation recipients are not students; they are everyone in the community,” he said.

In a two month period, 55 noise violation citations were issued in the Borough. Noise in West Chester is a problem, but not one of the largest, according to Lt. Morris.

Some of the target areas in town are the 400-700 blocks of S. Matlack St., the 50-100 blocks of Gay St. and the 200-700 blocks of South Walnut St. Citations are issued for breaching any prohibited action from loud cars to operating heavy machinery between the hours of 9 p.m. and 7 a.m.

Though it is not a large problem, there is some controversy regarding the degree of noise in the Borough. Families and residents of West Chester who are non-students are tired of the amount of noise they say is from college kids. A 35-yearold resident of Linden St. said, “The noise can be bad at times, but you become tired of getting mad about it and just learn to deal with it.”

The fact that non-students are so adamant about having the amount of noise lowered makes it very difficult for the borough police to try and please everyone.

On one hand, the police want to make the non-students happy by cracking down on the noise, but this could make the students think that the police were targeting them. On theother hand, if the police were to be a little more lenient with the noise that the students make, it would infuriate the non-students and make them think that the police department is not fulfilling its responsibility as the law enforcer. They are trying very hard to be the mediators in this battle, but it turns out to be a lose/lose situation.

The penalty for violation of a provision in the Noise Ordinance Code can vary. The fine can be anywhere from $25 to $1,000 plus the cost of prosecution.

The decision on the amount of the fine would be left up to the judge. If the recipient does not pay the fine, they could spend up to 30 days in county prison. When a student of West Chester University receives a citation, the Borough police inform the university judicial board of the occurrence.

West Chester University feels strongly about upholding the peace in the community; therefore, if a citation is given, the university may become involved and could possibly put the student on probation. The Ram?s Eye View student handbook states: “When a student is charged with violating a federal, state, or local law or ordinance at a location off campus, disciplinary action may be taken and sanctions imposed for misconduct that demonstrates a disregard

for the University community.”

The Town Gown Council is a division of Student Affairs that deals with, among other things, noise problems in off-campus housing. The council is handed citations from the Borough police that are reviewed, and then the students are contacted by the Office of the Dean of Students. The student will be informed that the case is being tracked through the local courts, and University proceedings will also move forward with the student. Depending Noise on the incident, the case may be dealt with by a warning letter or could be as severe as expulsion.

Lt. Morris believes that all we, as students, need to do is to have contact with our non-student neighbors. “If you are of age and are having a party, you should tell your neighbors. Let them know that if they have a problem with the amplitude of the noise throughout the night, to contact you so you can calm the party.”

Morris thinks that if students do this, there will be much more respect between students and non-students, thus increasing the respect for the community.

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