Ridgeley passes ordinance to regulate fireworks
By Ronda Wertman
RIDGELEY – Those wishing to set off fireworks in Ridgeley will now have to apply for a permit for times other than set hours for the Fourth of July and New Year’s.
The Ridgeley mayor and council this week passed the second and third readings of the fireworks ordinance which addresses the types of fireworks that can be used and when.
Sparklers, which make no noise, are permitted at any time under the ordinance except in circumstances such as dry or unsafe conditions as specified by the West Virginian State Fire Marshal.
Homemade fireworks or commercial blasting agents are prohibited, as all fireworks used must be a “consumer firework” in compliance with state and federal regulations.
The main focus on the ordinance is establishing when fireworks can be ignited.
Under the provisions, fireworks producing sound or an aerial blast are only permitted on July 3 and July 5 until 10 p.m., July 4 and Dec. 31 until 12 midnight and on Jan. 1 till 12:30 a.m.
Those wishing to utilize fireworks for other special occasions must request a one-day permit at least one week in advance from the town and receive written approval prior to igniting any fireworks.
In other business, Ridgeley will hold trick-or-treat on Saturday, Oct. 31 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
“Wear a mask, keep six feet apart and follow the rules,” urged mayor Mark Jones.
The town is continuing to make deposits to savings for the time when ground can be broken for the new town hall being proposed for the grounds of the former Ridgeley School.
It is hoped that the builder will be on hand for the Nov. 10 meeting to answer questions so the town can take the next step toward construction in the spring.
In response to questions about when late charges are added to water bills, commissioner Duke Lantz noted that the system automatically adds late fees if payment is not received when the bill is due. When a payment is received from a bank, it’s credited on the date received and if this is after the due date it will result in late fees.
It was also noted that when the office was closed during COVID-19 precautions, the drop box was available, the clerk was available many days and that late fees were not charged during that period.