By Angela Greenwood

FOLSOM (CBS13) —An in-home daycare in Folsom is sounding off after receiving a noise complaint from a neighbor. The daycare’s owner says she was caught off guard when code enforcement asked that the children try and keep it down while they’re playing outside.

She says she’s shocked that someone would complain about small children being active outdoors.

“I think the sound of playing children is a wonderful sound,” said Folsom resident Sandra Starbuck.

Every day those are the sounds echoing from inside a Folsom backyard, while kids both big and small are just being kids.

“It lets me know they’re happy,” said Star Junction Day Care owner Rebecca Marturano, “Outside is the time to play and be able to be rambunctious.”

Marturano opened Star Junction Day Care at her home eight months ago, but last week she got a call from city code enforcement saying a neighbor complained the kids were playing too loudly outside.

“We’re only out for an hour and a half at the most, and I feel like they have rights as kids to play.”

So, what are the rules regarding noise at daycares?

The City of Folsom drafted its own daycare ordinance addressing the issue, specifically only permitting outdoor activities from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Marturano is well within her rights, but she wants to make her business work for everyone.

“I want my neighbors to be happy of course.”

Others don’t have the same sympathy.

“There’s enough to complain about in the world today,” said Starbuck.

Folsom resident Jenifer Cabiniss said, “If you don’t want it, you turn on your bathroom fan. You find a way around it.”

Meanwhile, others can see how a new form of noise could be concerning to some.

“If they’re not used to it, I could understand a change like that being an inconvenience for them,” said Folsom resident Francesca Mirabelli.

While the sweet sounds of children playing will still echo from her backyard, out of respect for her neighbors, Marturano says the noise may be toned down a bit.

“‘I said let’s please try not to scream,” Marturano said. “I’m not going to keep the kids inside. The kids get to play.”

The neighbor who made the complaint told CBS13 they understand that kids need to play and say they called the city to ask about their rights. According to Folsom city officials, Marturano is not in violation as she didn’t break any rules.

Aside from Folsom, in other Sacramento County areas, day cares only have to follow general noise ordinances, which prohibit excessive noise from 10 pm to 7 am.

Comments (3)
  1. Many of our older neighbors have moved and younger families have moved into the neighborhood, the sound of the little ones outside playing is great. this once very quiet neighborhood is now full of life and the beautiful sound of kids playing.
    tell the neighbor to turn on the radio and shut the windows. Some people just have to complain.

  2. Janny McNeil says:

    Our homes are our sanctuaries. It’s where we retreat from the outside noisy world.
    Having a daycare next door with who knows how many kids allowed to play in that backyard would definitely be a problem. We’ve got a stressful world, folks. Let’s respect our neighbors by NOT exceeding common sense noise levels in our own backyards. Love kids, but Daycare operators need to be sensitive to ALL neighbors!

  3. I’m a little dismayed that someone would complain about what children do outside. Must just be envious. I never thought that–before I had children–I would so love hearing kids play and wish that I could be out there with them. Now I’m an adult and stuck inside for the bulk of my day at a job that’s generally unfulfilling. Now THAT’S worth complaining about. Not a child’s joy.

    And Janny, you live in Portland, so you’re twice removed from this; (1) you don’t live in Folsom, and (2) Portland is not known for being a child-friendly city. It’s a great place for young adults and retirees, but children are generally frowned upon.

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