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Township board OKs fireworks ordinance

by Susan Bromley

October 09, 2013

Brandon Twp.- A quieter, more peaceful township may soon be in the works— or in the lack of fireworks.

The township board passed by a 5-0 vote the first reading of a fireworks ordinance during their Oct. 7 meeting. Trustees Ron Lapp and Jayson Rumball were absent.

"We've been getting quite a few complaints regarding the noise of fireworks during various times throughout the summer," said Supervisor Kathy Thurman. "This ordinance means you can't indiscriminately light them off."

Township Building and Planning Director Bill Dinnan proposed the ordinance in a memo to the board due to numerous complaints by residents since recent changes in state law regarding use of consumer fireworks.

The ordinance adds a section "use of consumer fireworks" to the existing "Offenses against public peace" in the code of ordinances. The section states it shall be unlawful for any person to ignite, discharge or use consumer fireworks except on the day preceding, the day of, or the day after a national holiday, including New Year's Day; Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday; Washington's birthday; Memorial Day; Independence Day; Labor Day; Columbus Day; Veteran's Day; Thanksgiving; and Christmas. On those days, the ignition, discharge, or use of consumer fireworks will be prohibited between midnight and 8 a.m. or between 1 a.m. and 8 a.m. on New Year's Day.

The ordinance continues by adding that fireworks will be permitted between the hours of 8 p.m. and midnight on the Friday and Saturday immediately preceding and immediately following the 4th of July holiday.

A person shall not ignite, discharge or use consumer fireworks on public property, school property, church property, or the property of another person without that organization's or person's express permission at any time, and the possession or use of consumer fireworks at any time by a minor is prohibited.

Oakland County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Pete Burkett, commander of the Brandon substation, said passage of the ordinance will allow for easier enforcement of the law when responding to complaints.