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School officials have strongly opposed the amendments, and expressed disappointment when the ANC resolution was approved.

Local resident say much of the fault for the tensions lies with the university administration.

“We don’t blame the students,” Mr. Lewis said. “Students are going to live a nocturnal kind of life. We blame Georgetown University. They are lining their pockets with all of this extra tuition. We think that is wrong.”

D.C. Council member Phil Mendelson, at-large Democrat, thinks the changes by the city add “awesome definition” to the noise law.

“A lot of this reaction is a result of the fact that the law is clearer,” he said. “What we did, apparently quite successfully, was add more clarity to the law.”

He said the changes, in fact, better define the noise law, including replacing the word “nighttime” with the specific hours of 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. The legislation is less about noise abatement and more about disorderly conduct, Mr. Mendelson added.

He said often police issue only a warning and those found in violation of the noise law do not automatically receive a punishment. He said only those intending to “provoke breaches of peace” should be arrested.

“We have a simple law regarding noise,” the council member said. “A reasonable person knows when they are being annoying.”

Howard University sophomore Zakiya Cobb told the Hilltop, the student newspaper, that she could see both sides in the dispute.

“I understand the reasoning behind the law. However, it’s going to result in more college students getting arrested,” she said.