Chico to consider sales of fireworks

Apr 11, 2015 5:04 PM by Pedro Quitnana

Residents could be seeing firework booths popping up around the city of Chico if council members decide to pass an ordinance that would allow non-profit organizations to sell 'state approved' fireworks.
"There's a possible solution that other cities are using, we can do it here in Chico, doesn't really harm anything," Chico Councilman Andrew Coolidge said.
Cal-Fire says California going into its fourth year drought, the potential of wild land fires is at an all-time high.
"In July, when people typically would want use fireworks, that danger will be increasing, which will allow the fire to grow faster and spread more intensely," Cal Fire-Butte county Capt. Shannon Garrett said.
Chico and Paradise are the only communities that ban the sale of fireworks in Butte County... Coolidge says having state approved fireworks could limit the use of illegal fireworks.
"I think the best thing we can do it by having state approved fireworks, what you find is have a lot less illegal fireworks so when you legalize sparkler and fountains, you get rid of bottle rockets and roman candles." Coolidge says
Cal-Fire officials say it doesn't matter what 'type' of fireworks are sold, all have a potential to start a wildfire.
"All fireworks pose a threat be them safe and sane fireworks or illegal fireworks to the wild land" Garrett said.
She says if residents decide to bring fireworks into the county, they could face criminal charges.
"If in fact they start a fire with their legal fire use, they will be arrested for a felony violation of the law for starting a fire." she said.
Coolidge says he is also concerned with the drought as well but he says the Chico Fire Department is conducting a staff report that could help councilmembers make their decision.
"The fire chief will still have the ability to say you know this is a really bad year let's not do fireworks this year but do it in the future." Coolidge said.
The Chico city council will be discussing this proposal at the next city council meeting April 21st.


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