Belleville will not issue permits this year for consumer fireworks

News-DemocratJune 17, 2013 

— Belleville's mayor decided Monday not to issue permits this year to vendors who sell fireworks such as cones, cakes and mortars.

This means the type of fireworks sold in the city coincides with the type of fireworks allowed to be used in the city.

Residents are not allowed to set off consumer fireworks in Belleville.

Vendors can continue to sell novelty fireworks such as sparklers, party poppers and snakes. Residents are allowed to set off novelties.

The city will issue permits for professional pyrotechnic displays. The fee is $275.

In the past month, city leaders contemplated changing the city's rules on fireworks to allow residents to set off consumer fireworks if residents took a free 15-minute safety class with the Fire Department.

But Mayor Mark Eckert said after further discussion, he and Fire Department staff realized the city did not have the money or manpower needed to offer such safety classes.

The state requires residents to take a safety class and past a test to be issued a card to buy consumer fireworks. Vendors are supposed to ask shoppers for proof of this card before selling residents these fireworks.

Aldermen on the Ordinance and Legal Review Committee decided Monday they would not be able to approve and enforce the new rules by this Independence Day. They tabled the discussion on fireworks for now and set a goal of formalizing new rules in time for New Year's Eve.

Among the proposed changes were limiting the sale of fireworks to June 1 to midnight, July 4.

Contact reporter Jacqueline Lee at jlee@bnd.com or 239-2655. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/BNDBelleville.

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