The Mesa City Council recently approved updates to the city code regarding the permissible use of fireworks.
The changes align the city code with recent changes made by the state of Arizona while strengthening Mesa’s fireworks enforcement efforts, according to a release.
Changes to the Mesa city code include:
- Extending permissible use hours on New Year’s Eve and the Fourth of July from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. of the following day;
- Adding the Diwali holiday to the permissible sale and use timeline. Sales are allowed two days before the first day of Diwali through the third day. Use is permitted on the second and third days of Diwali;
- Creating criminal penalties for sale and use of illegal fireworks, and repeat violation offenders; and
- Updating civil penalty fines.
“We hope that the updates made will allow residents the ability to safely celebrate with legal fireworks,” Mesa Fire Chief Mary Cameli said in the release. “Keeping our neighborhoods safe includes educating our community on the permissible sale of legal fireworks coupled with the safe and legal use of fireworks. Our Fire Prevention division works alongside the Mesa Police Department to ensure the safety of our community.”
The following schedule allows for the sale and use of legal fireworks in Mesa:
- Sale April 25-May 6, for use May 4-6 between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m.
- Sale May 20-July 6, for use June 24-July 6 between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m. *With the exception of July 4 between 8 a.m. and 1 a.m.
- Sale Dec. 10-Jan. 3, fir use Dec. 24-Jan. 3 between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m. *With the exception of Dec. 31 between 8 a.m. and 1 a.m.
The updates in civil penalties include a minimum $500 fine:
- Use of permissible fireworks outside of allowed days/times
- Use of permissible fireworks on City property (excluding right of way)
- Failure to display required permissible consumer fireworks signage at the sale
The updates in Class 1 Misdemeanor penalties include fines of no less than $1,000 and up to $2,500:
- For use, possession, or sale of illegal fireworks
- Permissible consumer fireworks sold to anyone under 16 that conflict with state law or on prohibited days
- Use of permissible consumer fireworks during stage one or higher fire restriction near protected areas
- Failure to obtain a permit for a supervised public display of fireworks
- Failure to comply with permit and safety requirements of A.R.S. ? 36-1603 (permit for public display)
- Habitual offender within 36 months
The changes to the Mesa City Code can be found in Title 6, Chapter 21 pertaining to fireworks and permissible consumer fireworks.