/AH looking at new fireworks bylaw 

AH looking at new fireworks bylaw 

By Chad Ingram

Algonquin Highlands township is working on a fireworks bylaw that, like ones in other municipalities in the county, will relegate the lighting of
fireworks to specific holidays.
Chief building official and bylaw officer Dave Rogers told councillors the township continues to receive complaints regarding the discharge of fireworks, but since most take place before midnight, it’s technically not a violation of the township’s noise bylaw, which contains a section on fireworks, but only stipulates that they not be set off between midnight and 7 a.m.
Rogers explained the township had received a resident request that it switch to a bylaw in line with those in place in the Township of Minden Hills and Municipality of Dysart et al. In those municipalities, fireworks may only be set off during New Year’s Eve, the weekends of Victoria Day and Labour Day and the week of Canada Day, and fireworks are to take place between dusk and 11 p.m. Those who violate the bylaw can be fined.
“It will affect staff . . . because if somebody’s not following the bylaw,
we’ll be doing a lot more enforcement,” Rogers told councillors during
an online Aug. 13 meeting.
“I think we all acknowledge that enforcement is going to be an issue,” said Mayor Carol Moffatt, adding that even with a stricter bylaw in place, there would those who would knowingly violate it. “As the old saying goes, locks are for honest
Councillors agreed to move ahead with tighter restrictions, with Deputy Mayor Liz Danielsen suggesting a separate fireworks bylaw be created, as opposed to just a fireworks section within the township’s noise bylaw
“This is so much more than noise,” Danielsen said, adding that fireworks have environmental impacts, including affecting lake health.
Moffatt said she’d also like to see floating lanterns, some of which were lit during a recent total fire ban in Haliburton County, banned completely. Residents who wish to light off fireworks outside the prescribed times will be able to apply to the township of a special permit.
A draft fireworks bylaw will come back to the council table.