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Council to have more control over fireworks

April 27, 2005|BY GREGORY T. SIMMONS

HAGERSTOWN

The Hagerstown City Council approved a change to the city's noise ordinance Tuesday that will give it greater control over fireworks displays in the city.

The change comes after residents' complaints over fireworks displays after Hagerstown Suns baseball games at Municipal Stadium. One particular sore point was over the Fourth of July holiday last year, when the team scheduled three straight nights of fireworks.

Just before the council voted to approve the measure, Councilman Lewis C. Metzner said the city will not be able to regulate the Suns' fireworks schedule until next year because of legal issues, but the council will have full authority over how many fireworks displays the Suns can hold and at what time.

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The ordinance change also will allow the council to have full authority over any fireworks displays in the city. In addition to approval by fire agencies, no fireworks displays will be allowed in the city unless approved by the council.

The measure was approved in a 4-1 vote, with Councilwoman Penny M. Nigh voting against the measure.

Before the vote was recorded, Nigh raised the concern that the ordinance change did not specify that the city had the authority to regulate the timing of the fireworks displays, and said the residents "questions have still not been answered."

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