Costa Mesa motel owners will be fined $360 if they call for an "excessive" amount of police attention, under an ordinance approved Tuesday by the City Council.
Now, motels and hotels can be fined if they generate an average of more than 0.4 calls per room per month for recurring "nuisance activities," such as persistent noise, illegal use of a firearm, disturbing the peace, possession or sale of illegal drugs, underage drinking and loud parties.
Calls alerting police to domestic violence or summoning fire or ambulance services are excluded, the Daily Pilot reported.
The $360 fine, a city staff report said, was arrived at by dividing the annual Police Department budget — about $40.2 million — by annual calls for service, minus routine patrol checks and 911 calls that were canceled, unfounded or otherwise unnecessary to log.
That yielded an initial estimate of $515 per call, from which city staff subtracted 30% to "counteract charges" for police work unrelated to responding to calls.