Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Fireworks Vote Needed

I do not need a small group of people to tell me that what I have been enjoying lawfully and with no harm to myself or others is now somehow bad...

The vocal minority has foist a bad law on us that takes away yet another freedom and takes us one step closer to a nanny state.
Daniel Blakely of the Reader Advisory Board calls it like he sees it. Click on the title link to read his entire letter.

Friday, January 26, 2007

"Fundamentally Unfair"

"We all know the problems on the 4th of July are caused by lawbreakers using illegal fireworks. Such a ban would only punish Fontana citizens who look forward to celebrating patriotic traditions, legitimate businesses, and the 45 nonprofit groups in the city that depend on fireworks sales to fund vitally needed services," Kelly said. "It seems fundamentally unfair to punish all the people who abide by the rules for the criminal actions of the few who knowingly break the law."
But that's what has happened.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

What Are Other Cities Doing About Fireworks?

While the Fontana City Council's approach was to ban State-Approved Fireworks (SAF), two other cities had simultaneous ordinance considerations on their agendas. Here's how they chose to handle things:

Grand Terrace:
Following a lengthy debate, the City Council has agreed to keep fireworks legal...

City officials said that without the sale of fireworks, the city would not have been able to afford increased enforcement against illegal fireworks last year...

[City Manager Tom] Schwab said fireworks are a problem even in cities that have banned them.

"Even if you outlaw them, all the fireworks are still going to be here," he said.
Bringing a little sizzle back to the holiday, Whittier City Council members have OK'd "safe and sane" fireworks this Fourth of July, reversing a ban that had been in place since 1986...

By legalizing fireworks and charging permit fees to local civic groups that will sell them, the city will raise enough money to add officers beginning June 28, Councilman Joe Vinatieri said.

"There had been very little enforcement" in the past, Vinatieri said. "There's going to be two-person patrol teams deployed citywide."
In other words, they are using the revenue-generating potential of State-Approved Fireworks sales to help protect their cities from illegal fireworks, while preserving the rights of their citizens to celebrate Independence Day and their nonprofit groups to benefit their communities with needed funding. This sounds like a "Win" for everybody.

As opposed to the unnecessary loss just imposed on the citizens and service groups of Fontana.

End Nears for Firework Fundraising in Fontana

After three hours of testimony and discussion in a packed City Hall, with people wearing yellow "SAVE our fireworks & funding" stickers, the City Council on Tuesday unanimously banned all fireworks in the city's limits except for professional and civic displays effective July 5, 2008...

The decision to ban fireworks was a blow to nonprofits, service organizations and high school band boosters - who all rely heavily on the sales each year to help pay for their programs and scholarships.

Yes, the people who do so much good in the community, those who enjoy celebrating Independence Day safely, sanely and legally with State-Approved Fireworks (SAF), and legitimate businesses that employ people, pay taxes and comply with all the regulations have been singled out to pay for the illegal activities of the scofflaws.

Just remember: Such bans have been successfully challenged in other cities over the past several years. The one thing all those victories had in common: they took involvement by the citizens to make them happen.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Casting aside overwhelming opposition, the City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday night to ban the sale and use of fireworks within the city.

Representatives of schools and service organizations pleaded with the council to vote down the ban, because shutting down the fireworks stands means cutting off one of the biggest sources of funding they have for their programs...
Read the rest of the testimonials from people who gave up their evening to explain to the Council how the ban will hurt their fundraising efforts. Everyone from high school band members to veterans in need will suffer, and as we've been saying all along and some of the speakers confirmed, the problems come from lawbreakers shooting illegal fireworks.

Their pleas fell on deaf ears.

Only one person from the community spoke out in favor of the ban, claiming fireworks burned her roof. Left unchallenged was how that could have been done with any of the newly-banned fireworks, since State Approved Fireworks (SAF) DO NOT FLY UP IN THE AIR.

All is not lost--yet. First, the nonprofit groups will still be able to sell fireworks in the 2007 and 2008 seasons--the ban will go into effect after that. And don't forget that fireworks bans have been successfully challenged in the past.

Monday, January 22, 2007

We Couldn't Agree More

For most of us, a Fourth of July Celebration wouldn't be the same without fireworks.

The Mayor and City Council Members hope that all Fontana residents have a fun and safe time celebrating this special holiday. City leaders encourage residents who want to use safe and sane fireworks, to do so in a prudent and appropriate manner...

The City of Fontana allows non-profit organizations to sell safe and sane fireworks in order to raise much needed money for their groups. All safe and sane fireworks will have the State Fire Marshall Seal on it. City officials urge residents to follow all safety procedures when discharging fireworks.
These words were posted on the City of Fontana's official website, and we couldn't agree with them more.

You're absolutely right--it wouldn't be the same, City Officials. And the money is "much needed for [the] groups."

What was true when you posted these words on your website is still true today.

Also still true:
City officials along with the Fontana Police Department are taking necessary steps to stop the use or sale of illegal fireworks in Fontana.
Why not continue to work with the fireworks wholesalers, the nonprofit groups and Fontana's law-abiding citizens to focus on those intentionally breaking the law--instead of punishing the vast majority who follow all the rules?

Keep Fireworks Legal in Fontana: Make Your Voice Heard

The Fontana City Council will be voting to BAN legal fireworks on Tuesday night, Jan. 23.

The Council meeting will begin at 7:00, in the Council Chambers at City Hall. The address is 8353 Sierra Ave. Fontana, at the south east corner of Sierra and Upland.

If you enjoy using legal fireworks on the 4th of July and don’t want the Council to make you a criminal, we’re asking you to help keep them legal in Fontana. Please show up at this meeting and let the Council know you want to keep fireworks legal.

Who Will Be Most Affected if Fontana Bans Fireworks?

The members of 45 Non Profit Groups in Fontana are donating many hours of their time every year to raise literally HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS of DOLLARS PER YEAR, that goes right back into their community. These Non-Profit Groups include:
AB Miller Band Boosters
AB Miller Football Boosters
AB Miller Girls Basketball
AM Vets Post 1240
American Legion Post 772
Apostolic Faith Tabernacle
Center of Christ Ministries
Church of the Chimes
Crossroads Church
Exchange Club of Fontana
First Baptist Church of Fontana
First Lutheran Church
Fontana Academy for Martial Arts
Fontana American Little League
Fontana Chamber of Commerce
Fontana Christian Fellowship
Fontana Community Little League
Fontana First Assembly of God
Fontana High School Band Boosters
Fontana Mummers
Fontana Rotary Club
Fontana Steeler Gridiron
Fountain of Life Community Church
Fountain of Truth Apostolic Church
Inland Empire Club for the Deaf
Inland Empire Fury Soccer
Kaiser Catamount Pride Boosters
Kaiser Kickoff Club
Kiwanis Club of Fontana
Knights of Columbus
Living Waters Church
Mountain View Christian Preschool
Mountain View Community Church
Peace in the Valley Church
Resurrection Academy
Rock Steady Girls Fastpitch
Sequoia Pride of the Eagles
Southridge Little League
Southwest Little League
St. Joseph's Catholic Church
V.F.W. 6563
Victory Outreach
Water of Life
Youth Accountability Board

Friday, January 19, 2007

The Ordinance in Question

THIS is why this blog exists.

The Truth About State-Approved Fireworks

Check out the California Fireworks Newswire to learn about "Safe and Sane" state-approved fireworks.

Be sure and look at all the safety materials that have been created for celebrating the 4th of July safely and sanely.

What Can YOU Do?

Show up at the Council meeting and show support to SAVE FIREWORKS in FONTANA!

Speak in support of your 4th of July traditions, or of the groups that do volunteer work for our youth and the less fortunate among us.

Contact the Council

Call them at 909-350-7600

Email them. Their email addresses are on their Council webpage. Click on the name to bring up the page of the individual council members, and then click on their email link.

Will YOU Be a Criminal?

WILL FONTANA MAKE CELEBRATING THE 4TH OF JULY ILLEGAL?The FONTANA CITY COUNCIL will be meeting on Tuesday, January 23, to propose a ban on LEGAL FIREWORKS, the “Safe and Sane” kind that have been APPROVED BY THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL and that are sold by local community nonprofit service, religious and youth athletic groups. Some in city government have discussed banning them in the past.


If injuries are the concern, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that other sources –NOT FIREWORKS- account for 99.99% of all injuries—you’re over four times more likely to be injured by your kitchen stove!


How about people using ILLEGAL FIREWORKS? THAT’S the PROBLEM!
So why should the majority of us who OBEY THE LAW be punished for the CRIMINAL ACTIONS of a few?


Why not go after the LAWBREAKERS, and leave those of us who responsibly use and enjoy State Approved fireworks alone?

Why not make the CRIMINALS PAY, instead of patriotic families, legitmate businesses and Fontana’s charitable volunteers?

Fontana Council to Introduce Fireworks Ban!

The Fontana City Council will be meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 23 starting at 7:00 pm to discuss an ordinance change that will phase out LEGAL (State Approved) fireworks!

This is a call to action: If you enjoy using fireworks to celebrate Independence Day, or if you are a member of one of the nonprofit groups that depend on "safe and sane" fireworks to raise vitally needed funds used to benefit the community, please show up at this meeting and make your voices heard!