Bill Providing for Local Bans on Fireworks Advances

Local News

FILE- In this Jan. 15, 2019, file photo an America flag flies at the Pennsylvania Capitol building in Harrisburg, Pa. Pennsylvania lawmakers are expected to make the final vote on a bill to provide more time to file charges or lawsuits over cases of sexual abuse after a debate roiled by last year’s grand jury report into child molestation by Roman Catholic priests. A state House Republican spokesman says the chamber will vote Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019, likely sending it to Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

Legislation giving many Pennsylvania cities, including Erie, the option to ban commercial fireworks received Senate approval this week and was sent to the House of Representatives for consideration, according to Senator Dan Laughlin.

“We have heard a number of complaints about the blatant disregard of the rules for the safe use of fireworks. We’ve also seen the reports of one death and several serious fires caused by fireworks this year,” said Senator Laughlin. “As we have seen in many cases, it’s often in the best interest of everyone to empower local leaders to make decisions for their individual communities. That’s exactly what Senate Bill 932 does regarding commercial fireworks.”

In response to public safety concerns, including reports of significant injuries and fires caused by firework use, the Senate approved Senate Bill 932, which would give cities with a population of at least 58,000 the option to ban the use of consumer fireworks.

There are strict rules about where you can legally use the aerial fireworks that were made available in 2017. Under these restrictions, fireworks may not be used: on public property or on private property without express permission of the owner; while under the influence of drugs or alcohol; and/or within 150 feet of structures.

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