KEYSER - Setting off fireworks in the city of Keyser will be illegal except for the Fourth of July holiday and New Year's Eve if the Keyser City Council passes a proposed ordinance at their Aug. 8 meeting.
By Liz Beavers
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - Setting off fireworks in the city of Keyser will be illegal except for the Fourth of July holiday and New Year’s Eve if the Keyser City Council passes a proposed ordinance at their Aug. 8 meeting.
The council held the first reading of the ordinance during their July 25 meeting, following a discussion which actually began a year ago.
Just prior to the Fourth of July holiday in 2017, council members said they had been approached by residents bothered by the noise from fireworks being set off days or even weeks ahead of the holiday.
At that time, the mayor and council discussed passing an ordinance to regulate the use of fireworks, which had become legal in the state of West Virginia last year.
The Fourth of July came and went, however, and the council did not take any action on the issue.
This past June, the topic was again brought up when noise complaints started popping up in the weeks prior to the holiday.
Recognizing that it was too late to pass a law by this year’s Fourth of July, the mayor and council asked city attorney John Athey to go ahead and draft an ordinance which would be in place for next year.
Council member Jennifer Junkins read the proposed ordinance - which included a penalty for non-compliance - during the July 25 meeting.
In the ordinance, the use of fireworks is prohibited within the city’s boundaries except for between dusk and 10 p.m. on July 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6, and between dusk on Dec. 31 and 1 a.m. on Jan. 1.
Anyone violating the ordinance will be charged criminally by the Keyser City Police Department and will be subject to a fine of up to $100 for each offense.
In discussing the proposed ordinance, council member Terry Liller had expressed his
3 opinion that the law should include a provision for any group to obtain a permit for special celebrations.
Mayor Damon Tillman felt, however, that anyone could apply for such a permit and it wouldn’t necessarily have to be spelled out in the ordinance.
Council member Eric Murphy made a motion to accept the first reading, and William Zacot seconded it. The reading was accepted on a 5-0 vote.
The second reading will be held during the Aug. 8 council meeting and, if approved, the ordinance will become effective immediately.