The City Council rejected any notion of leaf blower regulation this week, saying local laws already exist to protect residents from excess noise.
Although Mayor Robert D. Breton made proposals that ranged from banning the leaf blowers to restricting their use to daytime hours, the rest of the council declined to support his motions.
"I think we feel there is too much regulation already," said Councilwoman Sharon Cody. "Too many laws aren't a good thing."
Orange County sheriff's Lt. George Johnson, who heads Mission Viejo police services, said deputies would respond to leaf blower complaints the same as they would to any other noise problem.
Breton discussed what he called health and noise problems created by leaf blowers. The garden devices have been outlawed by a few Southern California communities, including Laguna Beach, and restricted by at least a half a dozen Orange County cities.
The mayor cited dust, pollen and smoke created by the gasoline-powered machines. The need to regulate leaf blowers is a quality-of-life issue in a city that takes pride in its pastoral settings, he argued.