Wayne Co. commission calls for repeal of fireworks law

Charles E. Ramirez
The Detroit News

Wayne County commissioners are urging the Legislature to repeal Michigan’s fireworks law.

The county’s 15-member commission unanimously passed a resolution last week that calls on state legislators to support bills to repeal Michigan’s Fireworks Safety Act, which was passed in 2011 and legalized the sale, distribution and use of previously banned commercial-grade aerial fireworks.

County Commission Chairman Gary Woronchak, D-Dearborn, said the number of complaints from residents in his district has increased each year since the state eased restrictions on fireworks.

“This is a case where Lansing is just not listening to the people who are most affected by changes in the law,” Woronchak said. “And it’s just not possible for local police to keep it contained. This year in particular, with unusually dry conditions, common sense says that fireworks were even more dangerous than usual. But that didn’t cut back on the use.”

Woronchak introduced the resolution along with commissioners Glenn Anderson, D-Westland, and Joe Palamara, D-Grosse Ile, and vice chair Alisha Bell, D-Detroit.

It calls on state lawmakers to support bills in the legislature introduced by Sen. David Knezek, D-Dearborn Heights, and Rep. Henry Yanez, D-Sterling Heights, that would repeal the 2011 fireworks law.

Copies of the resolution will be sent to state representatives, senators and Gov. Rick Snyder, Woronchak said.

“The only solution is a complete repeal of the legalization of these fireworks,” the county commission chairman said.

“Certainly, there would still be people who would drive to other states to buy fireworks, and there would still be illegal discharging of fireworks in neighborhoods. But such activities would be far less than they are now, when you can buy fireworks in tents set up along the roadway.”