[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Middle Smithfield 6-10-2014 by Ord. No. 200. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter may be known and may be cited as the "Middle Smithfield Township Fireworks Displays Ordinance" of 2014.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated, unless the context shall clearly indicate otherwise:
- A. Any combustible or explosive composition, or any substance or combination of substances, intended to produce visible and/or audible effects by combustion, and which is suitable for use by the public, that complies with the construction, performance, composition and labeling requirements promulgated by the Consumer Products Safety Commission in 16 CFR or any successor regulation, and which complies with the provisions for consumer fireworks as defined in the American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) Standard 87-1, or any successor standard.
- B. The term does not include devices such as ground and handheld sparkling devices, novelties and toy caps in APA Standard 87-1, the sale, possession and use of which shall be permitted at all times throughout this commonwealth.
- DISPLAY FIREWORKS
- Defined as provided in 27 CFR 555.11.
- FIREWORKS DISPLAY or DISPLAY
- A public display of consumer fireworks and/or display fireworks.
- FIREWORKS DISPLAY PERMIT or PERMIT
- A permit granted by the Middle Smithfield Township Board of Supervisors for a fireworks display.
It shall be unlawful for any person, persons, firms or corporations, amusement parks, fair associations or other organizations or groups of individuals to have or hold a fireworks display within the limits of the Township, unless a permit is first granted by the Board of Supervisors.
Before a fireworks display permit may be issued, the applicant must apply to the Building Code Official for a fireworks display permit required by the Uniform Construction Code (UCC). If the Building Code Official indicates, in writing, that no UCC permit is required, the application shall be processed in accordance with this chapter. If a permit is required, the applicant must present the valid UCC permit before a fireworks display permit may be issued under this chapter.
Every such fireworks display within the limits of the Township shall be handled by a competent operator to be approved by the Board of Supervisors, and the display shall be of such character and so located, discharged or fired, as in the opinion of the Township Zoning Officer, or other person designated by the Board of Supervisors, after proper inspection, to not be hazardous to property or endanger any person or persons. Any such operator must have a Pennsylvania pyrotechnics license and be registered with the Attorney General of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in accordance with the Pennsylvania Fireworks Law, 35 P.S. § 1271 et seq.
Application for a fireworks display permit shall be in writing to the Township Secretary, in the form provided by the Township, at least 15 days in advance of the date of display, setting forth the proposed location of the display, the character thereof, name and address of the operator, and the name and address of the owner or owners of the grounds on which the display is to be held, with the consent of such owner or owners, in writing, attached, together with any other requirements contained in the application form. All applicants shall pay the Township Treasurer the sum of $200 before issuance of a permit and provide proof of the required bond and insurance.
The Board of Supervisors, under reasonable rules and regulations, may grant permits for the use of suitable fireworks for agricultural purposes in connection with the raising of crops and the protection of crops from bird and animal damage. Such permits shall be good for the calendar year issued. After such permit has been granted, sales, possession and use of fireworks of the type and for the purpose mentioned in the permit shall be lawful for that purpose only.
If and after a fireworks display permit has been granted by the Township Board of Supervisors or designee, possession, sale, use and distribution of consumer fireworks and display fireworks for such display shall be lawful for that purpose only. No permit granted shall be transferable.
Before a fireworks display permit may be issued, the permit applicant shall provide to the Township a current certificate of liability insurance — ACORD 25 (or equivalent form) — evidencing that the below minimum limits of insurance, coverage, and conditions are in place. In lieu of the applicant maintaining the required insurance, the operator may maintain the required insurance, if acceptable to the Township:
Both of the following:
A commercial general liability policy. General liability limits: each occurrence: $1,000,000; damage to rented premises (fire, damage, legal): $300,000; medical expense: $5,000; personal and advertising injury: $1,000,000; general aggregate: $2,000,000; products-completed operations aggregate: $2,000,000. The policy is to be primary and noncontributory; and
A commercial umbrella or excess liability policy. Limits: $4,000,000 occurrence; $4,000,000 aggregate. The policy is to be primary and noncontributory; or
A commercial general liability policy. General liability limits: each occurrence: $5,000,000; damage to rented premises (fire, damage, legal): $300,000; medical expense: $5,000; personal and advertising injury: $1,000,000; general aggregate: $5,000,000; products-completed operations aggregate: $5,000,000. The policy is to be primary and noncontributory.
Workers' compensation and employers' liability: bodily injury by accident: $500,000 each accident; bodily injury by disease: $500,000 policy limit; bodily injury by disease: $500,000 each employee.
Middle Smithfield Township, as the certificate holder, is to be named as an additional insured.
All policies are to include a waiver of subrogation.
Before a fireworks display permit may be issued, the permit applicant or its operator, if acceptable to the Township, shall provide to the Township a bond in an amount of not less than $500, in a form and with a surety satisfactory to the Board, conditioned for the payment of all damages caused to any person or persons, and to any property by reason of the permittee's/operator's display and arising from any acts of its agents, employees or subcontractors. The bond shall be filed with the Township Secretary before any permit for a supervised public display is delivered.
The permittee, and its operator, if different, shall indemnify and hold harmless Middle Smithfield Township, its officers, agents, and/or employees from any and all liability arising from the fireworks display for which the requested fireworks display permit is issued. By accepting an issued fireworks display permit, and by operating a fireworks display pursuant to a permit, the permittee and its operator, if different, acknowledge that this obligation to indemnify and hold harmless is incorporated by reference into any fireworks display permit issued.
If by reason of unfavorable weather the display for which a permit has been granted does not take place at the time authorized, the person to whom such permit was issued may apply to the Township Board of Supervisors within 24 hours, setting forth under oath the fact that such display was not made, the reason, and request for a continuance of such permit for a specifically designated day, no later than one week after the day fixed originally in said permit. Upon receiving such application for a continuance, the Township Board of Supervisors, if it believes the facts stated therein are true, shall extend the provisions of the permit to the day fixed in the application, no later than one week after the original day designated in the permit. Such extension of time shall be granted without the payment of any additional fee and without requiring any bond other than the one given for the original permit. The provisions of the original bond shall extend to and cover all damages which may be caused by reason of said display taking place at such extended date in the same manner and to the same extent as if such display had taken place at the date originally fixed in the permit.
This chapter shall be enforced by action before a magisterial district judge in the same manner provided for the enforcement of summary offenses under the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure. Any person who or which violates or permits a violation of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction in a summary proceeding, pay a fine of not less than $100, nor more than $1,000 per violation, plus all court costs and reasonable attorney's fees incurred by the Township in the enforcement proceedings, and/or be imprisoned to the extent allowed by law for the punishment of summary offenses. Each day or a portion thereof that a violation exists or continues shall constitute a separate violation. Further, the appropriate officers or agents of the Township are hereby authorized to seek equitable relief, including injunction, to enforce compliance with this chapter. All fines, penalties, costs and reasonable attorney's fees collected for the violation of this chapter shall be paid to the Township for its general use.
The provisions of this chapter shall supplement local laws, ordinances or regulations existing in the Township or those of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Where a provision of this chapter is found to be in conflict with any provision of a local law, ordinance, code or regulation or those of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the provisions which are more restrictive or which establish the higher standard shall prevail.
Notwithstanding the issuance of a fireworks display permit, the same shall automatically be rendered null and void, and no fireworks display be permitted, if there is a ban on open burning and/or a declared drought emergency in effect in the Township on the date of the proposed display.