REPORT TITLE:
Fireworks Prohibition

DESCRIPTION:
After January 2, 2000, prohibits the import, sale, and use of
fireworks unless permitted by county ordinance except for
religious or cultural purposes and public display; eliminates the
licensing and permitting for the import, sale, and use of
fireworks.  (SD1)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                                        680
THE SENATE                              S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
________________________________________________________________
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                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT
RELATING TO FIREWORKS.



BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 1      SECTION 1.  The legislature finds that the widespread
 
 2 discharge of fireworks in all counties in the State creates a
 
 3 serious safety hazard for persons and property as well as a
 
 4 severe health risk--particularly for the young, the elderly, and
 
 5 others with respiratory ailments--as a result of concentrated
 
 6 sulfuric smoke emissions.  The widespread use of fireworks also
 
 7 burdens county resources.
 
 8      The legislature also finds that fireworks in Hawaii are used
 
 9 in celebrations of cultural and historical significance to the
 
10 people of the State, including New Year's, Chinese New Year's,
 
11 and the Fourth of July.  The legislature nevertheless believes
 
12 that the costs of fireworks to society may outweigh any benefits
 
13 derived from the continued legalization of fireworks.  
 
14      The purpose of this Act is to prohibit the use of fireworks
 
15 in the State except for religious and cultural purposes and
 
16 public displays.  In addition, this Act permits individual
 
17 counties by ordinance, to authorize and regulate the sale and use
 
18 of fireworks within their respective jurisdictions.  
 
19      SECTION 2.  The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended by adding
 
20 a new chapter to be appropriately designated and to read as
 
21 follows:
 

 
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 1                             "CHAPTER
 
 2                             FIREWORKS
 
 3         -1  Definitions.  As used in this chapter:
 
 4      "Aerial common fireworks" means any firework, classified as
 
 5 common fireworks by the United States Bureau of Explosives or
 
 6 contained in the regulations of the United States Department of
 
 7 Transportation and designated as UN 0336 1.4G, which produces an
 
 8 audible or visible effect and which is designed to rise into the
 
 9 air and explode or detonate in the air or to fly about above the
 
10 ground and which is prohibited for use by any person who does not
 
11 have a display permit issued by a county.  "Aerial common
 
12 fireworks" include firework items commonly known as bottle
 
13 rockets, sky rockets, missile-type rockets, helicopters,
 
14 torpedoes, daygo bombs, roman candles, jumping jacks which move
 
15 about the ground farther than inside a circle with a radius of
 
16 twelve feet as measured from the point where the item was placed
 
17 and ignited, types of balloons which require fire underneath to
 
18 propel the same, aerial shells and mines.
 
19      "Fireworks" means any combustible or explosive composition,
 
20 or any substance or combination of substances, or article
 
21 prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or audible effect
 
22 by combustion, explosion, deflagration, or detonation and
 
23 classified as common or special fireworks by the United States
 

 
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 1 Bureau of Explosives or contained in the regulations of the
 
 2 United States Department of Transportation and designated as UN
 
 3 0335 1.3G or UN 0336 1.4G.  The term "fireworks" shall not
 
 4 include automotive safety flares, nor shall the term be construed
 
 5 to include toy pistols, toy cannons, toy guns, party poppers,
 
 6 pop-its, or other devices which contain twenty-five hundredths of
 
 7 a grain or less of explosives substance.  The term "fireworks"
 
 8 also shall not include any explosives and pyrotechnics regulated
 
 9 under chapter 396.
 
10      "Special fireworks" means any firework designed primarily
 
11 for exhibition display by producing visible or audible effects
 
12 and classified as special fireworks by the United States Bureau
 
13 of Explosives or contained in the regulations of the United
 
14 States Department of Transportation and designated as UN 0335
 
15 1.3G and which are prohibited for use by any person who does not
 
16 have a display permit issued by a county.
 
17         -2  General prohibitions.  Except as provided in
 
18 section   -3 it shall be unlawful for any person to:
 
19      (1)  Import, sell, or offer to sell fireworks in this State;
 
20           or
 
21      (2)  Possess, purchase, set off, ignite, discharge, or
 
22           otherwise cause to explode fireworks in this State; or
 
23           knowingly or recklessly permit, aid, or abet the
 

 
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 1           setting off, ignition, discharge, or explosion of
 
 2           fireworks on the premises under the person's charge.
 
 3         -3 Exceptions.  The prohibitions in section    -2 shall
 
 4 not apply to:
 
 5      (1)  Importing, selling, possessing, purchasing, setting
 
 6           off, igniting, discharging, causing to explode, or
 
 7           otherwise using or dealing in fireworks, except aerial
 
 8           common fireworks and special fireworks, or aiding or
 
 9           abetting in that activity, when authorized and
 
10           permitted pursuant to county ordinance;
 
11      (2)  Any person possessing, purchasing, setting off,
 
12           igniting, discharging, or otherwise using fireworks,
 
13           other than aerial common fireworks or special
 
14           fireworks, for bona fide religious or cultural
 
15           purposes; provided that the person is permitted in
 
16           writing pursuant to section    -5;
 
17      (3)  Any person setting off, igniting, discharging, or
 
18           otherwise using special fireworks for public display;
 
19           provided that the person is permitted in writing
 
20           pursuant to section    -6;
 
21      (4)  The use of flares, noisemakers, or signals for warning,
 
22           pest control, or illumination purposes by police and
 
23           fire departments, utility companies, transportation
 

 
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 1           agencies, and other governmental or private agencies or
 
 2           persons, including agricultural operations, in
 
 3           connection with emergencies, their duties, or business;
 
 4           and
 
 5      (5)  The sale or use of blank cartridges for a show or
 
 6           theater, or for signal, commercial, or institutional
 
 7           purposes in athletics or sports.
 
 8         -4 Penalty.(a)  Any person who imports into the
 
 9 State, sells, offers to sell, or in any way uses aerial common
 
10 fireworks or special fireworks in the State shall be guilty of a
 
11 class C felony.
 
12      (b)  Except as provided in subsection (a), any person, not
 
13 authorized or permitted pursuant to county ordinance, selling,
 
14 offering to sell, or otherwise distributing fireworks shall be
 
15 guilty of a misdemeanor.
 
16      (c)  Except as provided in subsections (a) and (b), any
 
17 person not authorized or permitted pursuant to county ordinance
 
18 who violates section    -2 (a)(2), shall be guilty of a petty
 
19 misdemeanor.
 
20         -5  Permits; religious, cultural purposes.(a)  It
 
21 shall be unlawful for any person to possess, purchase, set off,
 
22 ignite, discharge, or otherwise cause to explode fireworks in any
 
23 county unless the person has a valid permit issued by the county
 

 
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 1 in which the permitted activity is to occur to use fireworks for
 
 2 bona fide religious or cultural purposes.
 
 3      (b)   The permit required under this subsection shall be
 
 4 issued by the county in which the permitted activity is to occur
 
 5 and be nontransferable.  The county shall issue all permits for
 
 6 which complete applications have been submitted and which contain
 
 7 only correct information.  The permit shall specify the date of
 
 8 issuance or effect and the date of expiration but in no case for
 
 9 a period to exceed one year.  The application shall be made on a
 
10 form setting forth a description of the religious or cultural
 
11 activity to occur, dates for which the permit shall be valid, the
 
12 location where the permitted activity is to occur, and the name
 
13 of the proprietor or, if a partnership, the name of the
 
14 partnership and the names of all partners or, if a corporation,
 
15 the name of the corporation and the names of its officers.  The
 
16 permit application may be denied if the proposed use of fireworks
 
17 presents a substantial inconvenience to the public or presents an
 
18 unreasonable fire or safety hazard.  Any permit issued pursuant
 
19 to this chapter shall be prominently displayed in public view at
 
20 the site.
 
21      (c)  A permit issued pursuant to this section shall permit
 
22 the use of fireworks between the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
 
23 only.
 

 
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 1         -6  Permit for public display.(a)  Any person desiring
 
 2 to set off, ignite, or discharge special fireworks for a public
 
 3 display shall apply to, and obtain a permit from the county not
 
 4 less than twenty days before the date of the display.
 
 5      (b)  The application shall state, among other things:
 
 6      (1)  The name, age, and address of the applicant;
 
 7      (2)  The name, age, and address of the person who will
 
 8           operate the display, and verification that the person
 
 9           is a licensed certified pyrotechnic operator;
 
10      (3)  The time, date, and place of the display;
 
11      (4)  The type and quantity of special fireworks to be
 
12           displayed; and
 
13      (5)  The purpose or occasion for which the display is to be
 
14           presented.
 
15      (c)  No permit shall be issued under this section unless the
 
16 applicant presents, at the applicant's option, either:
 
17      (1)  A written certificate of an insurance carrier, which
 
18           has been issued to or for the benefit of the applicant,
 
19           or a policy providing for the payment of damages in the
 
20           amount of not less than $5,000 for injury to, or death
 
21           of, any one person, and subject to the foregoing
 
22           limitation for one person; in the amount of not less
 
23           than $10,000 for injury to, or death of, two or more
 

 
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 1           persons; and in the amount of not less than $5,000 for
 
 2           damage to property, caused by reason of the authorized
 
 3           display and arising from any tortious acts or
 
 4           negligence of the permittee, the permittee's agents,
 
 5           employees, or subcontractors.  The certificate shall
 
 6           state that the policy is in full force and effect and
 
 7           will continue to be in full force and effect for not
 
 8           less than ten days after the date of the public
 
 9           display; or
 
10      (2)  The bond of a surety company duly authorized to
 
11           transact business within the State, or a bond with not
 
12           less than two individual sureties who together have
 
13           assets in the State equal in value to not less than
 
14           twice the amount of the bond, or a deposit of cash, in
 
15           the amount of not less than $10,000 conditioned upon
 
16           the payment of all damages that may be caused to any
 
17           person or property by reason of the authorized display
 
18           and arising from any tortious acts or negligence of the
 
19           permittee, the permittee's agents, employees, or
 
20           subcontractors.  The security shall continue to be in
 
21           full force and effect for not less than ten days after
 
22           the date of the public display.
 
23      The county may require coverage in amounts greater than the
 
24 minimum amounts set forth in paragraph (1) or (2) if deemed
 

 
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 1 necessary or desirable in consideration of such factors as the
 
 2 location and scale of the display, the type of special fireworks
 
 3 to be used, and the number of spectators expected.
 
 4      (d)  The county, pursuant to duly adopted rules, shall issue
 
 5 the permit after being satisfied that the requirements of
 
 6 subsection (c) have been met, the display will be handled by a
 
 7 pyrotechnic operator duly certified by the State, the display
 
 8 will not be hazardous to property, and the display will not
 
 9 endanger human life.  The permit shall authorize the holder to
 
10 display special fireworks only at the place and during the time
 
11 set forth therein, and to acquire and possess the specified
 
12 special fireworks between the date of the issuance of the permit
 
13 and the time during which the display of those special fireworks
 
14 is authorized. 
 
15         -7 Sale to minors. Except as provided in section
 
16    -8, it shall be unlawful for any person to offer for sale,
 
17 sell, or give any fireworks to minors, and for any minor to
 
18 possess, purchase, or set off, ignite, or otherwise cause to
 
19 explode any fireworks.
 
20         -8 Liability of parents or guardians.  The parents,
 
21 guardian, and other persons having the custody or control of any
 
22 minor, who knowingly permit the minor to possess, purchase, or
 
23 set off, ignite, or otherwise cause to explode any fireworks,
 

 
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 1 shall be deemed to be in violation of this chapter and shall be
 
 2 subject to the penalties thereunder, except that the parents or
 
 3 guardian may allow the minor to use fireworks for religious and
 
 4 cultural purposes under the immediate supervision and control of
 
 5 the parent or guardian, or under the supervision and control of
 
 6 another adult who has been issued a valid permit pursuant to
 
 7 section    -5.
 
 8         -9  Counties; enforcement.(a)  This chapter shall be
 
 9 enforced by the designated county agencies.
 
10      (b)  The counties may enact ordinances or adopt any rules to
 
11 enforce this chapter and to administer sections    -5 and    -6,
 
12 including, but not limited to setting the permit fees.
 
13      (c)  All ordinances and rules regulating fireworks, adopted
 
14 by a county with an effective date prior to January 2, 2000, are
 
15 declared void.
 
16         -10  Effect on other laws.  Nothing in this chapter
 
17 shall be construed to apply to the possession, storage, sale, or
 
18 use of explosives and combustibles in accordance with chapter
 
19 396."
 
20      SECTION 3.  Chapter 132D, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
 
21 repealed.
 
22      SECTION 4.  This Act does not affect rights and duties that
 
23 matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were
 
24 begun, before its effective date.
 

 
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 1      SECTION 5.  This Act shall take effect on January 2, 2000.