Earlier this year, New York State approved a change in State law regarding fireworks which allows counties to pass local laws to permit the sale of sparkling devices. The State law that was passed allows the sale of sparklers, small novelty fireworks (such as snakes and poppers) and fountain fireworks up to 500 grams from June 1 to July 5 and Dec. 26 to Jan. 2. While the law permits the sale statewide, it is up to each individual county to opt in. According to the state office of Fire Prevention and Control, 21 counties have adopted it so far, including Madison, Onondaga and Herkimer counties.
However, Lawmakers in Oneida County did not opt in to permit the sale of sparkling fireworks, thus such fireworks are not legal for sale in the county. Since the law has not been adopted in Oneida County, it is illegal to possess or sell them here in Sherrill. Possession would be a violation and sale a Class A misdemeanor. The City will address it just like any other offense as it has in past years. It does not appear that situation will be changing anytime soon. While there hasn’t been any indication that the Oneida County Board of Legislators plans to bring the matter to a vote, County Executive Anthony Picente already has said he would veto any law legalizing fireworks. So, while fireworks are being sold nearby in the City of Oneida (which is Madison County), they are still illegal here in Sherrill.
For information only: Sparkling devices are ground-based or hand-held devices that produce a shower of sparks and colored flames, crackling, whistles and smoke.
They include the following:
- Cylindrical fountain-these are spiked to the ground before ignition and shoot colored sparks and sometimes whistles or smoke;
- Cone fountain-cardboard or heavy papered cone attached to a base;
- Wooden sparkle/dipped stick-wooden dowels coated in pyrotechnic material which produces showers of sparks; and
- Novelties including party poppers and snappers.
Michael R. Sayles Robert Drake
City Manager Chief of Police