Supervisors Vote Down Gun Noise Regulation

County staff members will not examine options to regulate gun noise near residential subdivisions after a split vote on the Board of Supervisors.

An initiative proposed by Supervisor Kristen C. Umstattd (D-Leesburg) would have had the staff looking at options to regulate gun noise, which is specifically exempted from the county’s noise ordinances, near homes. She said she has received many complaints from parts of Leesburg adjoining the county’s rural areas.

“They are hearing, fairly frequently, rapid gunfire going on for extended periods of time in excess of 45 minutes, going on as night approaches and after dark,” Umstattd said. “This has caused two veterans with PTSD to suffer enormous stress. It has caused people trying to enjoy their homes to not be able to.”

Supervisor Matthew F. Letourneau (R-Dulles) joined the effort, pointing to a previous meeting where he pushed to accelerate writing a new ordinance to allow commercial shooting ranges in rural areas to give people a place to practice. He was voted down in that push.

A narrow majority of supervisors also voted down Umstattd’s idea.

“When you have an issue of noise, whey isn’t the first step to have neighbor conversations?” said County Chair Phyllis J. Randall (D-At Large).

Supervisors voted 4-5 against Umstattd’s proposal, with Umstattd and Letourneau joined by Supervisor Michael R. Turner (D-Ashburn) and Juli E. Briskman (D-Algonkian). Supervisors Tony R. Buffington (R-Blue Ridge), Caleb A. Kershner (R-Catoctin), Sylvia R. Glass (D-Broad Run) and Koran T. Saines (D-Sterling) voted against.

9 thoughts on “Supervisors Vote Down Gun Noise Regulation

  • 2020-09-22 at 2:14 pm
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    So, if your neighbor is making a lot of racket with his rock band, you can expect the police to do something about it.
    If he’s making a lot of noise with automatic or semi-automatics for hours on end (as one my more obnoxious neighbors seems to do every Sunday afternoon), there’s nothing you can do about it.

    Thanks for nothing western Loudoun supervisors. Hope none of these jerks moves near you.

  • 2020-09-22 at 5:10 pm
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    Rural areas suffer from gun noise too. In some cases (in Lucketts) there is literally HOURS of automatic gun fire on Sunday afternoons (probably frustrated Redskins fans). No Phyllis – you don’t walk up to a rural house that has been shooting for hours ands suggest they stop. Have you ever gone beyond the gates of Lansdowne? 🙂

    • 2020-09-23 at 1:04 pm
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      Do you mean to imply that anyone who shoots guns on a Sunday is a psychopath and ought not be approached for fear of serious bodily harm?

      How about making contact with your neighbors on another day, or is actually communicating with neighbors no longer the norm in much of Loudoun County? Or is the first and only option now to call on the police which all Democrats now want to defund?

      Presumably the suffering and petrified new neighbor could drop a postcard in the mail with a burner cell phone number and ask to meet and get acquainted? Choose a neutral site, practice good field craft to make sure you aren’t followed to the dead drop, (perhaps we should call it something else?), and have a trusted soul cover your six there and back.

      This doesn’t have to be hard. Don’t make it hard.

  • 2020-09-22 at 5:22 pm
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    This area and this BOS just becomes more and more bizarre! They ignore the logical issues they should address and belabor the inane or spend money they allegedly do not have to have a survey or research done. It boggles my mind

  • 2020-09-22 at 9:50 pm
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    I live near the airport and can’t normally sleep before or after certain times of the day because of aircraft flying a few hundred feet over my home. But I knew that when I bought the house.

    If you buy a house in a rural area, you don’t have any justification to seek legislation to restrict farm sounds or smells, or any other lawful activities your neighbors enjoy on their property. It’s amazing that people think they can move into an area and start telling all of their neighbors what they can and can’t do after a couple of weeks or months.

    Talk to your neighbors first. You will find most folks pretty reasonable. And invest in a couple of cheap foam earplugs. I’ll give you a couple if you can’t afford them. I have to use them at night to sleep since the BoS won’t pass a law against airplanes.

    Your choice.

  • 2020-09-23 at 11:59 am
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    Bravo to the BOS for shooting this down!

    I fully expect the city slickers to petition the BOS to rid Loudoun of everything country like the smells and sounds of cattle and horses.

  • 2020-09-24 at 1:55 pm
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    It seems the “enjoy my noise” crowd thinks this is an issue of “city slickers” moving to the country and then being surprised by excessive shooting (we’re not talking about hunting but something more akin to gun fetish types enjoying their toys).

    roblem is, I moved here in the late 70s and there wasn’t this level of gun nuttery going on at that time. Wasn’t happening even 10 years ago. This is, for the most part, new arrivals who finally think they’re ina place where they can blast away.

    Talking to these people is pointless. Believe me, I’ve tried.

    • 2020-09-24 at 5:38 pm
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      Amazing how much condescension can be packed into one comment.

      Can’t imagine why there is no middle ground.

    • 2020-09-27 at 11:29 am
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      “These people”?

      That’s certainly painting with a broad brush.

      I get that noises can be annoying and some people are harder to reason with.

      This has been a whacky year. It’s definitely been a noisier year with families stuck home.

      Regardless, if neighbors and fellow citizens can’t talk to each other this country will never recover from the current divide.

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