Bunkie Council shoots down amendments to ordinances

Two proposed ordinances -- one to put more teeth in a “saggy pants” law and the other to apply a simpler definition to what constitiutes “loud music” -- were defeated at the Bunkie City Council meeting on Feb. 13.

Mayor Bruce Coulon said the two proposed amendments to the ordinances were designed to help the Police Department better enforce the law and serve the public interest.

One amendment would have changed the definition of "saggy pants” to include pants sagging three inches or more below the waist “regardless of whether the person is wearing shorts or not,” Coulon said.

The current indecent exposure law allows for a person to be charged with indecent exposure if they are "in a state of nudity, or partial nudity" or exposing "his or her person or undergarments." The mayor had recommended strengthening the ordinance to include a provision prohibiting wearing pants more than three inches below the waist that exposes “any part of the buttocks, pubic hair or undergarments of that person.”

Coulon said he researched the matter and found several municipalities that had adopted the version of the ordinance he was recommending.

That proposed amendment was defeated on a 2-3 vote with council members Brenda Sampson, Lem Thomas and Travis Armand voting “No” and Bill Longoria and Greg Prudhomme voting “Yes.”

The second proposed ordinance amendment was to allow a ticket to be issued to a person if their music could be clearly heard more than 50 feet away from the site where the music is being played.

The current law uses a decibel measurement as the determining factor on what constitutes “loud music.”

Under that ordinance, any noise exceeding 70 decibels -- roughly the noise level of normal traffic -- is a violation.

“The city does not have a decibel meter and I do not believe we can afford to buy one,” Coulon said after the meeting.

Longoria was the only councilman voting in favor of the amended ordinance.

In other business, it was noted the new Roses Discount Store will hold a grand opening at 9 a.m. Feb. 27.

The store is located in the former Fred’s, off U.S. Hwy 71.

The council also voted to advertise to sell two surplus vehicles to the high bidder. The 1987 Ford and 2002 Chevrolet vehicles can be examined at the fire station on Oak Street.

Successful bidders will have 14 days to pay for and remove a vehicle.

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