The noise ordinance is scheduled to be discussed at the Austell City Council’s pre-agenda meeting at 6 p.m. tonight at Austell City Hall.
Acapulquito bar and restaurant at 1936 Veterans Memorial Highway, just east of the Austell/Maxham Road overpass, had been the subject of complaints regarding loud music. The city received a number of complaints, especially from Acapulquito’s next door neighbor Efficiency Lodge, an extended-stay motel.
“They’re playing their music so loud that it’s rattling the windows at the motel,” Councilwoman Virginia Reagan, chairwoman of the public safety committee, recently said.
“The police chief went over there and did a decibel count and it was even with what you’re allowed.”
On July 2, council members voted to reinstate Acapulquito’s business privilege license after it had been yanked by the city for several days. City officials said they were assured by owner Moises Del Gado that he would keep the music down.
“The mayor and council returned the license under the conditions the restaurant complied with the city’s noise ordinance,” said City Clerk Carolyn Duncan.
Del Gado declined a one-on-one interview with the Journal, citing his limited English.
Presently, Austell’s ordinance prohibits the “making, creation or permitting of any unreasonably loud, disturbing or unnecessary noise in the city,” as well as noise that can be “detrimental to the life, health or welfare of any individual.” It also limits sounds in residential, business and industrial zones to varying decibel levels throughout the day.
From her bedroom, Ward 1 Councilwoman Kirsten Anderson said she often hears loud music coming two blocks away from Margarita’s Mexican Cantina on Veterans Memorial Highway at Jefferson Street. But she said she has been reluctant to complain about it.
“I want to see our businesses in Austell prosper,” she said.
“What one of our council members, Martin Standard, suggested, and I thought it was quite a good suggestion, is that maybe we should also give an entertainment license so that in case this is to happen in the future – whether it be (Acapulquito) or somewhere else – instead of closing the whole business down we could just take away their entertainment license and they would not be allowed to have any music anymore.”