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Mason City council to consider new ordinance dealing with sale of fireworks

This news story was published on November 24, 2018.
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MASON CITY – After a wild, noisy and potentially dangerous Fourth of July holiday in Mason City in which pets and residents were essentially terrorized by out-of-control exploding of fireworks across the city, the City Council is poised to enact a new ordinance to regulate the sale of fireworks in city limits.  The city council will consider the following ordinance at a future council meeting:



BE IT ORDAINED by the City Council of the City of Mason City, Iowa:
Section 1: That the City Code of the City of Mason City, Iowa, should be and the same is hereby amended by repealing Title 8 “Public Safety and Police Regulations”, Chapter 3, “General Offenses” Section 8 “Consumer Fireworks”, Subsection A through C and adopting new Subsections A through C in lieu thereof, as follows:


8-3-8: CONSUMER FIREWORKS: The purpose of this section is to regulate the sale, use, or exploding of consumer fireworks within the City. All sales, use, and exploding of consumer fireworks shall conform to Iowa Code section 727.2, the requirements of this section, and all other applicable requirements of this Code.
A. Definitions: For the purpose of this section, the following terms shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this subsection:
CONSUMER FIREWORKS: Shall have the same meaning as defined in Iowa Code section 727.2.
FIRE MARSHAL: An inspector appointed by the Office of the State Fire Marshal, or, if so designated by the State Fire Marshal’s Office, the City Fire Marshal.
PERMANENT BUILDING: A structure enclosed within interior walls and having a roof, built, erected and framed of a combination of materials for the support, enclosure, shelter or protection of persons, animals, chattels or movable property of any kind, and which is permanently affixed to the land.
TEMPORARY STRUCTURE: A tent, canopy, stand, converted metal container, or similar enclosure that is not permanently affixed to the land, which is not intended for permanent use, and is erected for the purpose of retail sales of consumer fireworks.
B. Sales: General Requirements:
1. Conformance With State and Local Law: All sales of consumer fireworks shall conform to the requirements of Iowa Code section 727.2, title 12, “Zoning,” of this code, and all other applicable sections of this Code.
2. Application: Prior to establishing any sales outlet for consumer fireworks, an application on a form supplied by the Fire Department shall be submitted, along with all required attachments, and the initial inspection fee, to the City Fire Marshal. Attachments shall include:
a. Proof Of License: Proof of licensing from the Office of the State Fire Marshal.
b. Proof Of Liability Insurance: Proof of liability insurance, separate from the building property insurance, covering all aspects of consumer fireworks sales for a minimum amount per occurrence of one million dollars ($1,000,000.00) and a minimum aggregate amount of two million dollars ($2,000,000.00).
c. Site Plan: All initial applications for establishment of a consumer fireworks sales outlet shall include a detailed site plan, drawn to a measurable scale, showing the location of all permanent buildings on the site and the location of any temporary structures erected for sales of consumer fireworks.
d. Emergency Contacts: The applicant shall submit a completed emergency contact information form for fireworks sales from the Mason City Fire Department.
e. Transient Merchant License: Except for non-temporary sales and wholesale operations, all applicants shall provide proof of application for a transient merchant license from the City Clerk.
3. Review: All initial applications for sales of consumer fireworks shall be reviewed and determined to be in compliance by the Development Review Committee, as created in title 12, chapter 7 of this Code prior to establishment of the sales outlet or erection of any temporary structure. Upon determination that the application is complete, the Fire Marshal shall forward the application to the Development Review Committee. The Development Review Committee shall determine whether the request for retail sales of consumer fireworks is in compliance with the requirements of the State Code, this section and all other applicable requirements of this Code.
a. Compliance: All sales shall comply with Iowa Code section 727.2. Location of sales, storage of consumer fireworks, and setbacks of temporary structures shall comply with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards, as adopted by State Code, and with the International Fire Code, as adopted by the City, as well as with all applicable City zoning and building ordinances.
b. Sales In a Permanent Building:
1. Sale of consumer fireworks within a permanent building are allowed only within a building constructed and intended for use as a commercial or retail/service form within the Z4, Multi-Use District, or an industrial form within the Z6, Industrial districts, as set forth in title 12, section 12-8-3, subsections D and J of table 2, “Zoning Form and Function Table” of this Code; however, sales of consumer fireworks may not be conducted within any part of a self storage building, or a building containing a tavern function; and further provided that all other requirements of applicable State and local codes are met.
2. Only the initial application to establish sales of consumer fireworks shall be reviewed by the Development Review Committee to determine that sales will be in compliance. However, any expansion of the building or expansion onto additional properties shall not commence until the Development Review Committee has reviewed the expansion and determined it to be in compliance.
c. Sales In a Temporary Structure:
1. Sales of consumer fireworks in a temporary structure shall be permitted only upon property within the Z6 Industrial districts, as designated by title 12 of this Code.
2. The initial application for sales in a temporary structure shall be reviewed by the Development Review Committee to determine that sales will be in compliance. When future inspections by the Fire Marshal identify that a change in the location of fireworks sales, display or storage, setback of temporary structures, or other material change from the approved plan has occurred, the Fire Marshall shall order sales to cease until a revised plan has been reviewed by the Development Review Committee and determined to be in compliance.
4. Inspections: Upon determination that all application and review requirements are complete, the City Fire Marshal shall notify the applicant and schedule an inspection.
a. Sales of consumer fireworks within a permanent building shall be inspected annually.
b. Sales of consumer fireworks from a temporary structure shall be inspected after erection of the temporary structure for each season in which sales will be conducted, but prior to any sales.
c. If a transient merchant license is required, the operator shall present a copy of the license to the Fire Marshal upon the initial inspection.
6. Violations: Should the Fire Marshal find any violation of this section, State code or other applicable codes or ordinances, sales shall immediately cease. Sales may not resume until the violation has been corrected and the Fire Marshal has determined that the operation is in full conformance.
7. Renewal:
a. Permanent Building: An emergency contact information form and transient merchant license, if applicable, for sales of consumer fireworks in a permanent building shall be renewed annually. The Fire Marshal shall inspect the premises to determine that the sales conducted therein continue to comply with State and local Codes.
b. Temporary Structures:
1. consumer fireworks permit for a temporary structure shall expire on the date that the temporary structure is removed, or July 8 of each year, whichever is sooner.
2. Each such temporary structure must be removed by July 15 of each year.
3. If the permit holder wishes to reestablish sales in a temporary structure at the same location the next year, the applicant shall obtain a new updated permit or license from the State Fire Marshal’s Office, as required by State code. The application and review process for the reestablished temporary structure sales shall be the same as required for the original application.
8. Revocation: The Fire Marshal may revoke the approval at any time due to false or fraudulent information during the application and inspection process, or any violation of State or local requirements.
9. Inspection Fees: Inspection fees shall be set by resolution approved by the City Council.
C. Dates Of Permitted Sales:
1. All sale dates and requirements shall conform to the required City Code. Consumer fireworks may only be sold during those periods allowed under the applicable Iowa Code.
3. Sales within a permanent structure or building shall be allowed between June 1 and July 8 and from December 10 until January 3.
4. Approved temporary structure or stand sales shall be allowed between June 13 and July 8.

Section 2: That all ordinances or parts of ordinances in conflict with the provisions of this ordinance are hereby repealed.
Section 3: If any section, provision, or part of this ordinance shall be adjudged to be invalid or unconstitutional, such adjudication shall not affect the validity of the Ordinance as a whole or any section thereof, or part thereof, not adjudged invalid or unconstitutional.
Section 4: This ordinance shall be in full force and effect upon its final passage, approval and publication as required by law.
PASSED AND APPROVED this 20th day of November, 2018.

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12 Responses to Mason City council to consider new ordinance dealing with sale of fireworks

  1. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    November 26, 2018 at 9:21 am

    Big deal ! Just hop in your buy here pay here financed contraption and drive to the casino in nuttywood – Old Bartzie has all kinds of fire works for sale on that property he owns next door.

  2. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    November 25, 2018 at 3:18 am

    not going to change the shooting of them. those who have them will shoot them no matter what day or what time because they know nothing is going to happen, call the police and they drive by and radio, its all quiet now. out of all the complaint calls they got, how many citations were issused?? NONE that’s probably because what I heard was the chief of police told his officers not to charge anyone.NOTHING is going to change.

    • Anonymous Reply Report comment

      November 27, 2018 at 8:41 am

      Continue to shoot them off illegally and the next step is banning them or restricting them to the point it just isn’t worth it. There are always some people who break the rules and ruin it for everyone.

  3. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    November 24, 2018 at 5:43 pm

    How is “regulating” the sale of fireworks, going to stop the terrorizing of pets and citizens? Why don’t the city enforce the rules that are on the books now, instead of making up new rules that only regulate/control the sellers. Is it the sellers that are terrorizing this town with the ” out-of-control exploding of fireworks across the city”? This is just lip service by the council, to make citizens think that they are doing something useful. Will the council ever get it right? I think that it’s the illegals that are bringing in the fireworks and terrorizing us.

  4. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    November 24, 2018 at 4:50 pm

    Terrorized? What a bunch of pussies! Ban fireworks but sell Automatic weapons…… what hypocrisy.

    • Anonymous Reply Report comment

      November 24, 2018 at 5:29 pm

      Who in Mason City sells automatic weapons?

      • Anonymous Reply Report comment

        November 24, 2018 at 5:55 pm

        That’s just like asking Who in Mason City sells pot? If you want weapons, ask around and its for sale. Or just visit then next gun show, make a trip out to the parking lot and they are on display in trucks of cars or in the back of pickups.

        • Anonymous Reply Report comment

          November 24, 2018 at 9:26 pm

          I’m guessing that you don’t know the difference between automatic and semi-automatic, or the laws pertaining to them.

          • Anonymous

            November 25, 2018 at 8:24 am

            Just another typical anti-gun Dumb Ass. People like that are why we have guns.

          • Anonymous

            November 26, 2018 at 3:35 pm

            People like you are why we have gun laws.

  5. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    November 24, 2018 at 3:59 pm

    Things blowing up in the sky for entertainment is barbaric anyways. People are easily amused by simple things.

    • Observer the Original Reply Report comment

      November 26, 2018 at 5:39 pm

      I guess you did not attend the show at the end of the PGI convention. Not only was it done professionally, but were better than some of the shows I have seen in Chicago and it’s suburbs. One set was by far the best I have ever seen.

      If you don’t like them, fine. But why belittle others for finding enjoyment in them.