SONOMA, Calif. – A proposal to ban gas-powered leaf blowers within the city limits of Sonoma is set headed to the City Council on Oct. 7, a move that would put the city in select company among California cities to impost a ban on the use of the noisy devices.
At its Sept. 4 meeting, the City Council voted 4 to 1 to have Planning Director David Goodison draft an ordinance putting the kibosh on using gas-powered leaf blowers.
The proposed ban generated from a group of vocal residents who posted a petition for a ban on MoveOn.org that garnered 55 signatures. The proposal was put on the council’s Sept. 4 agenda by Councilman Steve Barbose and David Cook, the former of whom was on the council in April 2011 when new limits on the use of leaf blowers were put in place, including banning their use on Sundays and city-observed holidays.
Sonoma would join the Marin cities of Belvedere and Mill Valley among North Bay towns to ban gas-powered leaf blowers. Other California cities restrict the hours of operation, or allow only electric or battery-powered blowers. Goodison said that while the draft ordinance will focus only on gas-powered leaf blowers, the council directed him to include options for restricting the use of electric and battery-powered blowers, such as limiting the hours they can be used.
The city’s current rules restrict the use of leaf blowers in residential areas to between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and in city parks on the same days between the hours of 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.
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