Man slammed over house’s blue lights honoring emergency workers

nypost.com

A Utah neighborhood is blinded by the lights.

Jeff Noorda spent 2½ weeks painstakingly decorating the front of his Saratoga Springs house with rows of blinking blue lights to show support for doctors, nurses and first responders fighting on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis.

“This is my one little way of saying thank you,” he told local news station KSL.

But neighbors in the Legacy Farms community, about 35 miles south of Salt Lake City, aren’t pleased with his public show of appreciation. Noorda is violating a rule about how long Christmas lights can stay up after the December holiday, according to the local homeowner’s association. It sent Noorda a message telling him to remove the lights — or get fined $50.

“As a community, we are all very sympathetic to what is going on with the pandemic. We all have family and friends that are on the front line,” said Joey Duckworth, president of the homeowners’ association. “But Christmas lights were supposed to be down by March 1.”

Noorda was furious about the slap on the wrist. “To get a letter for having lights on my house to say thank you, I was actually very shocked,” Noorda said. “We have got hundreds of thousands of people across the country and the world that are dedicated to going to work regardless of their safety.”

The defensive reply rankled neighbors. “The tone of the email we received was so aggressive in nature and so combative we didn’t feel the sincerity in what he was actually indicating,” said Duckworth, adding that that Noorda never asked for permission to put up the lights after the March 1 date.

Though he admits he was aware of the Christmas-light edict, Noorda maintains that the blue trimmings on his house don’t count as holiday lights — they’re not red and green — and that the pandemic is ample reason to bend the rules. “These are times that nobody has gone through before,” he said.

The homeowners’ association confirmed it would issue Noorda the fine if the lights weren’t removed.

“Rather than work with us and try to come together, he wanted a fight,” Duckworth said. “You want a fight? Well, that’s when rules are rules.”

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