HAILEY, Idaho (KIFI) – The proposed emergency ordinance banning the use of fireworks in Hailey was adopted Monday and is currently in effect.
Mayor Martha Burke requested the City Council impose the emergency ban after the city council's June 14 denial of fireworks sales permit for all fireworks stands in Hailey.
The action does not constitute a permanent ban at this time but an emergency ban due to the elevated fire dangers posed by the area’s drought conditions.
The provisions will be immediately enforced and remain in effect through the July 4 holiday and up to 180 days thereafter, until otherwise rescinded by the Hailey City Council.
“We use emergency provisions only in matters of urgent public safety," Mayor Burke said. "Leaders from many local jurisdictions are very concerned about public safety in the midst of our current hot, dry summer with excessive drought conditions. There is clearly a need for a ban on fireworks this year.”
The Hailey City Council made strong remarks against the sale of fireworks during last week’s meeting. This is the second consecutive year the council has denied the requested consumer sales permits. Last year they had expressed concerns about Covid and drought. This year, their concerns were all about fire danger and public safety within extreme and extended drought conditions.
According to Mayor Burke and Hailey Fire Chief Mike Baledge, prohibiting the sale of fireworks in Hailey does not go far enough. Consumer fireworks stands are only allowed to sell non-aerial fireworks in Hailey. Aerial fireworks have always been illegal within the city limits.
“When residents travel to buy fireworks, they buy what’s available, much of which is illegal in Hailey," Fire Chief Baledge said. "We all want to celebrate Independence Day in a robust and safe way. If the emergency order in approved by the Hailey City Council, the only legal use of fireworks in Hailey this year will be the community fireworks display put on by the City of Hailey on the evening of July 4th after the conclusion of the Days of the Old West Rodeo. Perhaps we should consider making the city’s display even bigger and brighter in future years.”