Ordinance attempts to tamp down parties

December 14, 2012
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The City Council’s Government Operations Committee is currently reviewing an ordinance that will try to rein in out-of-control parties in the city.

The “nuisance control” ordinance, which was introduced by City Councilor Sal LaMattina, could have hosts of loud and unruly parties and partygoers themselves facing fines. Repeat violations would bring landlords into the fold.

Under the ordinance, first-time offenders could face a $100 fine. A second violation within a year would bump the fine to $300 and would also target landlords if they were notified of the first violation.

Loud parties have been a continuing problem in Mission Hill, especially because of a large college population. A group of local residents and activists, including Alexandra Oliver-Davila of Sociedad Latina, and Jim Hoffman and Pat Flaherty, both of Mission Hill Neighborhood Housing Services, recently signed on to a letter to the Gazette that voiced support for the ordinance.

In the letter, while saying not all college students are a problem, some are hosting loud parties resulting in screaming, littering, public drinking and vandalism.

“Our neighborhoods should be as quiet and clean as the local university campuses, where loud, destructive student behavior is not sanctioned,” the letter states. “We need similar sanctions to protect those of us who live in Boston’s neighborhoods, with children who go to bed at 7 p.m., and jobs that start at 7 a.m.”

City Councilors LaMattina and Mike Ross, who lives in and represents Mission Hill, did not respond to requests for comment.