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Raleigh toughens noise penalties, OKs WiFi network

Posted May 19, 2009

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— The City Council on Tuesday put more teeth in Raleigh's noise ordinance by allowing police to assess fines for violations.

Previously, police could charge someone with a misdemeanor for violating the noise ordinance, but convicting people on such charges was time-consuming, officials said.

The new ordinance, which takes effect July 1, allows police to assess civil fines for violations, starting at $100 per day for a first offense and $300 per day for additional offenses within 12 months. People have the opportunity to appeal a fine to an arbitrator.

The City Council also approved a $111,729 contract with WindChannel to build a wireless Internet connection for downtown. The WiFi network would cover the area bordered by South, West, Morgan and Person streets, and officials expect it to be operational by this fall.

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  • AndDenWhat May 19, 2009

    Noise ordinances are stupid

  • nufsaid May 19, 2009

    "Let's wait for the recession to end before making new expenditures on the WIFI network that only the few who venture downtown can take advantage of. To be fair, they need to implement a WIFI at Crabtree Valley and Triangle Town Center.
    TarheelsDontLikeEdwards"

    Nope, the downtown elites "deserve" perks paid for by all taxpayers. Unless Meeker plans to give laptops to the homeless next.

  • smitty May 19, 2009

    Muni wifi is a joke. Many other cities have tried it, most have shut theirs down due to cost and lack of use.

  • coolwill May 19, 2009

    they just keep spending for the elite.

  • Quagmire May 19, 2009

    Outdoor access points are more expensive due to the need to weatherize them.

  • Quagmire May 19, 2009

    Windchannel was a local company but was taken over by AirBand. They do wireless point to point network connections and have a hub downtown.

  • chivegas May 19, 2009

    From story:
    "The City Council also approved a $111,729 contract with WindChannel to build a wireless Internet connection for downtown."

    So are we to assume that this is for a "public" wifi network? Or is this for the city's network?

  • wseaweed May 19, 2009

    Isn't this a lot of money to provide WiFi for just a few blocks of downtown--not even all of downtown?

  • MyNameIsMud May 19, 2009

    "In other words, they did not have enough evidence to convict anyone of a criminal offense, so they opted to lower the standards of evidence, make it civil, and limit the ability to appeal any unjust decision."

    Pretty much. And I'm sure the Raleigh police didn't have the time and money to equip officers with noise measuring devices to present in court (as opposed to a speed radar.) I think it gives the officers freedom to say "Yep, that's noisy" and just write the fine.

    This is LONG, LONG overdue.

  • Steve Crisp May 19, 2009

    In other words, they did not have enough evidence to convict anyone of a criminal offense, so they opted to lower the standards of evidence, make it civil, and limit the ability to appeal any unjust decision.

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