Fireworks regulations

With everything else the Minnesota Legislature has to do in the next five weeks, do we need another dustup on fireworks regulations?

Rep. Jason Rarick, (R-Pine City) had a bill passed by the House on Monday that would allow Minnesotans to purchase “aerial and audible” fireworks during the five weeks of the state’s fireworks season. Right now, Minnesotans who want more than sparklers and snakes have to drive across state lines to get bigger, louder and better fireworks.

And drive they do. Every 4th of July you can hear the strings firecrackers and see the bottle rockets and roman candles going off after dark. It’s no secret that Minnesotans spend a lot of money on fireworks they can’t get in their own borders.

Rarick would like to see Minnesota collect the revenue from the sale of those fireworks by allowing them to be sold in the state.

Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed similar legislation last year, and he is likely to do it again. He doesn’t want somebody blowing off their fingers or putting an eye out with state-sanctioned fireworks.

We have to wonder, though, how many people who drive long distances for fireworks are coming home with a bunch of Black Cats and bottle rockets. How many have also loaded up on M80s, cherry bombs, and artillery-sized skyrockets? If people could get more bang for their buck (pun intended)?at home, would it cut down on the importation of really dangerous stuff?

Something for the governor to think about.

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