Local Ordinances

If your municipality has an outdoor lighting ordinance, please  Contact Us. Also check with your city secretary or P & Z department for existing ordinances to start from. Ask them to search for these key words:                      Light Pollution, Outdoor Lighting, Exterior Lighting, Glare, Light Trespass, Signs, Parking Lots, Roadways, Sidewalks

Texas municipalities with specific Outdoor Lighting or Light Pollution Ordinances:

Flower Mound (7/97)

Plano (4/00)

Alpine (5/00)

Dripping Springs (Date?)

Glen Rose (5/01)

Harker Heights (spring/summer 2002)

Frisco (Nov. 2000)

Jeff Davis County (McDonald Observatory) (2002?)

Fort Bend County (George Observatory) 3/23/04

El Paso (2005)

Midland (outdoor lighting policy)(2005)

Village of Wimberly, 2001

Helotes (July 7, 2006)    (Click on “Chapter 34 Environment/Article IV”)

Austin (January 2007)    To read the code, scroll down to pages 4 and 58-60 of the pdf document:

ElPaso: http://www.elpasotexas.gov/sitemap.asp Then click on MUNICIPAL CODE and go to Chapter 18:18 Outdoor lighting Code.

Under Development:

Fairview (6/03)

Cedar Hill (2/05)

Follow the resource page about Brazoria County (George Observatory) 1/05   http://people.consolidated.net/tovinder/light_ord.htm

With the light pollution controls now adopted in Helotes, Bulverde, Wimberly, Dripping Springs, and Boerne there is a wall forming north of San Antonio in the Hill Country and hopefully it will continue to get spread.”

The new Boerne lighting requirements are located in the Zoning Ordinance as it is not a stand alone ordinance. They are on the City of Boerne web site at http://68.89.132.119/portals/4/docsadmin/zoning_revised122006.pdf ; scroll to Article III Section 2 beginning on page 21 of the code.

Bulverde can also be added to the list of light pollution ordinances! The Boerne zoning department head reported that the person responsible for getting an ordinance for Bulverde was a fellow named Chance Sparks. I believe he worked for the City of Bulverde and has since has moved on to San Marcos.

The City Manager is designated to enforce the Boerne zoning ordinance in general, including outdoor lighting; however, reference is made only to Texas Government Code http://law.onecle.com/texas/local-government/211.012.00.html. Section (b) of this Code is non-specific, and apparently must be backed up by local enforcement criteria.

211.012.00 (b) A person commits an offense if the person violates this subchapter or an ordinance or regulation adopted under this subchapter. An offense under this subsection is a misdemeanor, punishable by fine, imprisonment, or both, as provided by the governing body. The governing body may also provide civil penalties for a violation.

Five excellent ordinances to use for now as guidelines include:

1. Hailey, Idaho (http://www.haileycityhall.org);

2. Ketchum, Idaho (http://www.scn.org/darksky/code/id/ketcdrlo)

3. Eagle, Colorado (go to LiteLynx list on Links page and click on Local Laws/Colorado/Eagle/pp.4-13 ‘Lighting Standards”;

4. Mammoth Lakes,California (http://www.ci.mammoth-lakes.ca.us; Click on Reports, go to Community Development Dept.)

5. Fort Bend County: See Useful Links page.

Model Lighting Ordinance (MLO)– for Outdoor Lighting

3/03: The MLO is being developed by a working group of the I.D.A. in cooperation with the Illuminating Engineers Society of North America (IES-NA), and representatives of other professional groups and the lighting industry. The first draft version 2004.1 was made available for comment on the I.D.A. website in fall 2004. See Announcements for updates.

Meanwhile, study the latest version of the Outdoor Lighting Code Handbook  Individual sections can be printed.

Two new IESNA standards are incorporated into this version of a “pattern” code:

(1)  The five environmental zones of lighting levels called E-zones.

(2) Instead of designating foot-candles or other light meter measurements, a standard based on lumens per acre is used, which can be translated into watts per unit of measurement (feet or meter).

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