New legislation that will effect how many Hoosiers celebrate Independence Day (July 4) was signed into law in March.

The new law will have a direct impact on public safety and will also help fund not only public safety but also firefighter training.

Funds will be generated by a 5 percent safety fee added to the sale of all fireworks. The additional fees went into effect June 1 and additionally address when and where consumers can set off fireworks.

Beginning this year, fireworks may be used only on the user’s property or on property in which the owner has given their permission. Fireworks may only be purchased by those 18 years of age or older. Minors may use or be in possession of fireworks only when an adult is present.

Penalties for violators can range from a class “A” misdemeanor to a class “C” felony. The higher charges may result from recklessness or intentional misuse of fireworks that result in death.

According to Indiana State Fire Marshal Roger Johnson, Hoosiers need to be aware of restrictions now in place regarding public use of fireworks and the possible penalties for violators.

Retailers are not exempt from the new legislation.

All fireworks outlets must be registered with the IDHS Division of Fire and Building Safety, unless sales are made in a permanent structure. Those structures that are used on a temporary basis may only sell fireworks such as sparklers and ground spinners. The new regulations also requires that an inspection of all retail sales locations be made by IDHS Division personnel or a member of a local fire department.

The aforementioned public safety fee will be collected on each transaction and will be payable to the Indiana Department of Revenue. A portion of the funds collected will be used to establish a State Disaster Relief Fund that will help offset the state’s response to emergencies or disasters that do not qualify for federal disaster assistance.

Read more on the new legislation in upcoming editions of the Rushville Republican.



Frank Denzler can be contacted at (765) 932-2222 or via e-mail at frank.denzler@cnhimedia.com. To add a comment to this story visit our Website at www.rushvillerepublican.com.