New fireworks legislation aims to legalize use in Ohio - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

New fireworks legislation aims to legalize use in Ohio

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio -

They're a symbol of freedom and America's independence soaring high in the sky each and every summer. Fireworks have a become a staple for Independence Day celebrations and soon they could become legal to use across the Buckeye State.

"There's a desire to do something, but there's an even greater desire to not just let Ohio turn into the wild west," says Phantom Fireworks Director of Government Affairs Danial Peart.   

House Bill 226, passed Wednesday, would look to create a study committee made up of legislators and different safety groups that would ultimately look at the current laws on consumer fireworks in Ohio and make a recommendation on how they should change to the Senate. 

"This is legislation that would promote a good, honest dialogue between everyone involved and with an interest in the fireworks industry on what the best, most responsible steps are for Ohio," said Peart. 

Legalizing fireworks in your backyards won't happen overnight, it could actually take close to a year for this bill to pass through the Ohio Senate and become law. 

Chief Jack Nichols with the Boardman Police Department says because shooting off fireworks is only a misdemeanor it puts a strain on his officers to try and respond to all of the fireworks calls they get. 

"Over the past couple of Fourth of July's I've paid attention and it seems that if we made an attempt to respond to every complaint of fireworks being shot off every single one of our officers on duty would be tied up on fireworks calls not leaving any available for more serious offenses," Chief Nichols said.

Chief Nichols adds that if firework use is legalized residents would still have to abide by their communities individual noise ordinances. 

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