By Bill Short
The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen has unanimously passed an ordinance on first reading that would amend the Municipal Code regarding the sale of fireworks.
Board members took the action during their May 11 regular monthly meeting on a motion offered by Alderman Don Lowry and seconded by Alderman Mike Caruthers.
The proposed ordinance is scheduled for a public hearing and final reading at the board’s June 8 meeting.
The Tennessee Code Annotated empowers the city to pass ordinances governing the issuance, revocation or suspension of a permit for the storage, sale and/or distribution of fireworks within the city limits.
The proposed ordinance would require a permit applicant to pay a $100 “cleanup deposit” for each retail fireworks site. The deposit would be refunded after the fireworks season or, if necessary, used by the city to clean up the site.
Along with forfeiture of the deposit, the applicant’s failure to clean up the location could result in additional cleanup charges and revocation of the permit.
When the submitted application has been approved, a city codes enforcement officer would inspect the site for compliance with applicable codes and ordinances.
After completion of the sales period, the permit holder would have to contact the city for another inspection to verify the site’s compliance with the terms of this ordinance.
Retail fireworks could only be sold from freestanding tents that meet the following requirements:
(1) compliance with the current adopted International Building Code and the Life Safety Code;
(2) no larger than 3,200 square feet in size;
(3) not erected more than seven days prior to or after the sales period;
(4) ground fault interrupter protection for cords that supply power to tents;
(5) interior electrical wiring securely installed without splices;
(6) lamps protected from accidental breakage by a suitable fixture or guard;
(7) no sleeping within tents and/or stands;
(8) no smoking or presence of lighted cigars, cigarettes, pipes or vapor products within tents;
(9) posted signs with the words, “Fireworks – No Smoking” in letters at least 4 inches tall;
(10) an inspected and currently tagged fire extinguisher with a minimum 2A rating;
(11) a pressurized water-type fire extinguisher;
(12) fireworks stored at least 10 feet away from windows and other areas where the sun might shine through;
(13) no fireworks stored in a permanent building;
(14) no fireworks stored in residential districts, except for personal use.
Tennessee law was changed in 2019 to allow the sale of fireworks in Millington.
At its May 13, 2019 meeting, the board passed an ordinance on final reading that created a Fireworks Sales Overlay zoning district for temporary sales in the city.
The overlay district occurs only from June 20 to July 5 and from Dec. 21 to Jan. 2.
To obtain the overlay zoning in either the B-2, General Commercial, or P-C, Planned Commercial, districts, applicants must submit a Site Plan for approval by the Millington Municipal Planning Commission.