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MPs consider out-of-court fines for noise pollution

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MPs at the House interior committee were on Monday discussing the possibility of out-of-court procedures to deter businesses from causing noise pollution, as court proceedings take too long to be effective.

Dipa MP Marinos Moushiouttas submitted two proposals, aiming to deter instigators for creating a nuisance in the form of excessive sound, particularly in city centres and entertainment venues.

“We don’t want fun to come at the cost of human rights and other people’s peace and quiet,” he said.

His first proposal outlines businesses could pay a €20,000 guarantee, which could only be mandatory after the first violation of the law. Moushiouttas added the sum could also be amended. Representatives from entertainment venues said they would revert with a counterproposal and were opposed to the idea of guarantees as a matter of principle.

The second proposal concerns out-of-court arrangements to avoid the time-consuming court process. The sum could be decided on the basis of proportionality, Moushiottas added.

The interior ministry noted the proposals were in the right direction, however the justice ministry and police raised the issue of implementing the law. They asked that the matter be handled by local authorities.

Responding, the union of municipalities noted they were in support of the proposals, but the idea of excessive sound needed to be better defined, not just for entertainment venues but any other events.

A spokesman from Cyprus’ employers and industrialists federation (OEV) called for a more in-depth discussion of the matter.

Representatives from the hoteliers’ association and tourism businesses, highlighted the importance of protecting tourism but were in favour of any law which could effectively work to deter the problem.

The deputy tourism ministry suggested the creation of a one-stop shop for businesses to head to for all their permits, rather than having to go to a number of different departments including local authorities, district officers, police and the sanitation department.

 

 


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