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Apr 30, 2002
Noise of dirt bikes is irritating some residents; Some are drawing a line in the dirt

Michaela Baltasar
The Tribune
466 words
10 February 2004
The San Luis Obispo Tribune

(c) Copyright 2004, The San Luis Obispo Tribune. All Rights Reserved.

In response to complaints about noise and dust, the Atascadero City Council may consider regulating motorcycle tracks on private property.

The council will hold a public hearing on the issue at its meeting at 7 tonight. No decision will be made yet, but if city leaders feel too many residents are bothered by motorcycle use, they could in the future limit when the bikes are used or ban them completely.

There's "no way of knowing" what direction the council will take until after tonight's discussion, said Mayor George Luna.
"A lot of it will probably depend on public comment that we get," Luna said. "We want to see how many people on either side think this is a problem."

Tonight's discussion was prompted by citizen complaints at a previous council meeting.

Motorcycle noise is an ongoing issue, said Atascadero police Sgt. Kim Treece. Police receive complaints about dirt bikes "a couple times a week and more frequently on the weekend."
It seems to take place more in outlying areas of Atascadero, where residential lots are at least 2.5 acres and residents have the space to ride motorcycles and dirt bikes on their property.

Warren Miller, who lives on the west side of town, said the city should create an ordinance limiting how long people can ride their motorcycles. "When you have two or three motorcycles running, the dust is horrendous," Miller, 68, said. "I can't open doors in evening, and the noise is horrendous."

But 12-year-old Tyler Bereman goes to a friend's house in Atascadero at least twice a week to ride motorcycles. A Templeton Middle School student, he won five motocross races in the Bounty Hunter Series last year. He worries that an ordinance may make it more difficult for him to ride.
"Riding around here is easier because you don't have to drive far," said Tyler. "It would be way harder for me to get good."

Wendy Smallwood, whose 11- and 12-year-old sons ride motorcycles in a circle and over a small dirt jump on her 3-acre property, said the activity benefits children. "They're having fun and being safe," said Smallwood, 39. "It's better than being out somewhere else." She could accept an ordinance regulating how long her sons can ride their bikes, she said. But she's bothered by the potential of such restrictions. "You should be able to do what you want on your own property," said Smallwood, who has lived in her current home for about seven years. "We all have something that bothers our neighbors - people have horses or they have crops that they spray."


Jan 27, 2000
23jayhawk said:
"A lot of it will probably depend on public comment that we get," Luna said. "We want to see how many people on either side think this is a problem."


Well, there's your chance.

Flood the council chambers with people from our side.

Send letters and e-mails to the council members and explain the benifits of enjoying dirtbikes on our own property as opposed to other activities the young people with nothing to do can get involved in. Such as, graffiti, stealing cars, smokin dope, etc, etc.

Be nice in your letters and response. Be polite and explain how great of a family activity dirtbiking is. How it gives you something to strive for, something to look forward to. Explain to them how those that ride dirtbikes also have to have things like jobs to support their sport.

Also, it wouldn't hurt to make sure you have a quiet exhaust system on your bikes and a little water on your private track to keep the dust down. Work with the neighbors, talk to them and let them know that you are aware of their concerns and want to work something out.

GO TO THE MEETINGS. You may be supprised at how few people it takes to make a difference at these meetings. :thumb: Of course, that goes for the other side too.

It's up to us to make a difference, or you can just sit there and bitch about it. Your choice.

Just my $ .02
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