Skubick: Move to repeal state’s fireworks laws sputtering

Michigan

A push is underway at the State Capitol to repeal the state’s fireworks law.

But now there’s a strong push back to preserve the law.
 
Rep. Peter Lucido is clear on his view. “It’s pretty obvious people overwhelmingly don’t want to have noise going on all the time.”

And Rep. Brant Iden has another view of the issue. “Throwing the whole baby out with the bathwater is not a good way to celebrate American’s freedom.“

Those lawmakers who want to eliminate the fireworks law realize they don’t have the votes to do it.

Which is why former firefighter, now state representative, Henry Yanez wants to ban all those aerial fireworks. “They are big. They are loud and almost professional style fireworks in the hands of amateurs, frankly. And there were 11,000 injuries in 2013. They are unsafe.”

“I’m a big fan of that,” says Rep. Iden. 

Rep. Iden chairs the committee working on this issue and he is willing to tweak some parts of the law but on balance  he says “I think the law is working well.”

No, it’s not, counters Rep. Lucido, who wants to stop all fireworks after midnight.

“If we’re blowing them off at two, three, four in the morning, people are going to bed and we’re going to hear this noise and the debris, outrageous,” states Rep. Lucido.

Opponents of the law claim there were 100,000 9-1-1 fireworks calls at a cost of $3.5 million to local departments.

Rep. Yanez says “The state might be making money but local cities are losing money.”

“I don’t think the fire service likes it at all,” says Rep. Tom Cochrane, a former Lansing fire chief. “A lot of chiefs complain about local calls to chase after this problem. It’s a nuisance.”

There’s been no hearings on any of these bills, so it’s sure there won’t be any changes before this 4th of July. 

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