A year on, nobody has been targeted with the city’s “host liability” law, which lets the City Attorney’s Office issue civil penalties to property owners, charging them for Fire and Police department response to fireworks.
A spokesman said fire investigators are trying to determine if the injured parties lit the fireworks or were “collateral damage from others lighting them.”
City officials presented the tools and policies they hope will contribute to a quieter holiday celebration this year after the city saw thousands of calls pour in last year from residents complaining about illegal fireworks.
An estimate from the police department said those costs could range from $5,080 to $19,460 for a larger seizure. Those numbers do not include estimates from the fire department, which could add even more to the penalty.
The vote will allow the city attorney’s office to issue municipal citations and seek the cost of recovery for police, fire, and other city personnel from those violating the law.
The proposal would expand who could be cited for illegal fireworks and up the penalty.
People applying for the $100 permit can get it for free, but they have to pledge the party will be a fireworks-free zone. All fireworks are illegal in the city.
Councilwoman Stacy Mungo Flanigan is proposing the city waive the $100 permit fees this year for block parties as a way to get more eyes on the streets, she said Wednesday.
A total of 13 people were cited for fireworks use on the Fourth of July and now city leaders are looking to stiffer fines and better enforcement to ensure a more peaceful holiday next year.
With many changes already in place, the City Council wants to see how it can better enforce the city’s fireworks ban this year and in the future.