Source: Sherman Publications

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Fireworks ordinance ignites restrictions

by Mary Keck

October 10, 2012

In an effort to defuse Michigan's new fireworks regulations, the Independence Township Board approved first reading of a fireworks ordinance, Oct. 2.

Michigan's Public Act 256 went into effect in January 2012 and legalized the use of consumer fireworks such as roman candles and bottle rockets.

While the township's ordinance doesn't ban the big booming firecrackers, it limits the days they can be detonated.

Superintendent Bart Clark pointed out the ordinance is a response to "many complaints from angry citizens about the detonations of these more powerful fireworks at all hours of the day and night, not just around the holidays."

While the township has received numerous objections to the boom and rumble of fireworks, no injuries or property damages associated with fireworks have been reported, said Clark.

Currently, residents can light up bottle rockets any time of the year, but if the township adopts this new ordinance, locals will be unable to do so except on the day before, the day of, and the day after ten national holidays.

In addition to making the night sky a little less colorful surrounding Independence Day and New Years, the ordinance also restricts such pyrotechnic displays to residents who are not under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. Setting off fireworks from public parks and churches is also prohibited.

The township isn't the only area municipality thinking of adding restrictions to PA 256, the Clarkston City Council will likely adopt a similar ordinance, said Mayor Joe Luginski.

"Our intent is certainly to mirror the township's ordinance. It only makes sense," said Luginski.

He indicated that the council will put a similar fireworks ordinance adoption on their agenda after the township's second reading, which will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 7:30 p.m. in the Township Hall.