Hacienda Noise Complaints Continue Despite Town Promises


Longstanding noise complaints about events (weddings, primarily) at the Hacienda appear to be continuing unabated, despite assurances from the Town that amplified music and other noise from weddings and similar events would be monitored and mitigated. Over the past few years, neighbors have reported an increased frequency and severity of loud events at the Hacienda. The Town's lack of an objective noise ordinance with teeth has been problematic.


More problematic, however, is the Town's apparent unwillingness and inability to properly address the issue. This began over a year ago with a Staff report on the long-term Hacienda-Wedgewood lease incorrectly stating that neighboring, comparable cities (Orinda and Lafayette) lack relevant noise ordinances; cities it did claim were comparable (Alameda and Concord) were cherry-picked and the events and venues there are dissimilar to Moraga. At the time, we called out these critical omissions in this story and in a failed Fact Check. Town Staff has resisted requests by residents and some councilmembers (who are in the minority) to discuss and craft a worthwhile and objective noise ordinance that would address the issue.


Before recently turning over Hacienda wedding events to Wedgewood, the Town assured residents that an onsite monitor would manage noise levels. That didn't appear to do much to assuage neighbors' complaints on an almost-weekly basis. The Town also indicated at the time that they had no control over DJs or bands hired by wedding customers, but promised that circumstances would change after Wedgewood's takeover with their own, in-house entertainment.


Nonetheless, regular noise complaints have continued and it appears neighbors are rapidly reaching their breaking point insofar as the Town's and Town Staff's ability and willingness to address the issue given the history of broken promises, misrepresentations and lack of movement on a noise ordinance similar to those of neighboring towns.

 

More background on the Hacienda-Wedgewood lease agreement are in our stories here and here.

We called out the Staff Report's omissions and inaccuracies on noise mitigation and noise ordinances here and here.