Weekend hourly chimes just noise to neighbors

Published 4:28 pm Friday, October 16, 2009

Bel-Aire Baptist Church agrees that its chimes won’t ring hourly on weekends — or before noon on weekdays.

Gulfport officials helped work out the compromise between the Rev. Randy Hommel and James Baumgartner, who set up a Web site and mailed 180 postcards asking neighbors to complain.

Hommel tells The Sun Herald in Biloxi/Gulfport the $5,000 rooftop system installed in August does not violate Gulfport’s noise ordinance.

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But instead of hourly from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Bel-Aire’s chimes will now ring the hours from noon to 5 p.m. on weekdays only. They also will be played as a call to worship for Sunday services and for special services.

Baumgartner will post the agreement on his Web site and notify people he had sent cards and e-mails about the agreement.