ROHNERT PARK (KPIX 5) — An emergency ordinance passed by the City of Rohnert Park is targeting wild and noisy house parties near the Sonoma State University campus.
According to city officials, there are sometimes eight to 10 parties a night when school is in session. Past house parties were noisy, and crowded with as many as 400 students. At the most recent house party on Wednesday night, a female student was arrested for public drunkenness.
Sgt. Jeff Justice of the Rohnert Park Police Department said residents are fed up with the parties. “In the past five years, we averaged 200 calls a month,” he said.
City leaders told KPIX 5 that the parties are out of control. “They were hanging from chandeliers, and doing crazy things in the house,” City councilmember Gina Belforte told KPIX 5. “When we wake up in the morning, residents see beer cans in their mailboxes, and people threw up on their lawns.”
This week, the city passed a new emergency ordinance, which doubled the punishment for hosts of the noisy house parties. Violators will not be allowed to host another party for 120 days, up from 60 days. The four-month party ban ensures the violating home will host only one party a semester.
Students told KPIX 5 the punishment is excessive. “It’s a little overboard,” Sonoma State junior Marisa Chin said, “actually a lot overboard.”
Violators will also have to post a public nuisance sign in their window, if the police have to break up their party. If an officer drives by and the sign is not visible, they can be fined an additional $100.
Officials said fines could go up to as much as $1,000 for people who violate the party ban.
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