A fireworks ban will come into effect in Oahu on January 2, 2012. This is only a couple of weeks away and people are starting to gear up for keeping this ban effective. The new rules will make even sparklers and paper fireworks illegal. Firecrackers, however, will be allowed on certain holidays such as New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year, and the Fourth of July. Senator Espero has been working to increase the effectiveness of the State’s Illegal Fireworks Task Force. The Departments of Agriculture and Transportation are also being asked to aid in the enforcement of the ban. Espero wants dogs to sniff out imported illegal fireworks in shipping containers. Since currently only five percent of containers are being inspected, any increase will be beneficial. Among those opposed to the ban is Jerry Farley who lobbys for American Promotional Events, a fireworks wholesaler. Because four of the original council members who pushed the ban are no longer on the council, Farley believes he has a chance to get the ban repealed. Espero is confident in the success of the ban and does not think that a repeal is likely.
The ban is covered under Bill 34. It does allow adults to purchase a $25 permit which would allow them to buy up to 5,000 firecrackers during the aforementioned holidays. While this is not an outright ban, it will curtail the currently excessive use of fireworks.
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