Illegal fireworks have been a persistent issue for Lincoln City, and the City is looking at potential ways to mitigate the use that has oftentimes extended well past the Fourth of July holiday.
City staff has tossed around a few ideas that go beyond handing out fliers or launching a social media campaign (strategies they’ve used in the past). At the Oct. 26 City Council meeting, Council discussed the potential of adding security type personnel at beach access points to prevent the use of illegal fireworks on Fourth of July. This personnel would be theoretically authorized to issue citations, as the City shifts their focus to enforcement.
Several Councilors felt that the main focus should be on the Roads End area, which many feel sees the most illegal firework use. Councilor Diana Hinton said she doesn’t even want to leave her home in Roads End during the holiday for fear of fireworks burning it down.
“Having fliers up didn't even make a dent on the use of fireworks at Roads End,” Hinton said. “We’ve had fireworks even up until last month. It’s an ongoing issue that’s not just the Fourth of July.”
Hinton proposed issuing a fireworks ban in Roads End. Councilor Rick Mark suggested creating stronger signage discouraging firework use. Although Councilor Riley Hoagland agreed a stronger message needed to be sent, he is fully in favor of adding security type personnel.
“Action will be a lot stronger,” Hoagland said. “It’s reached a critical mess. We can still hear fireworks. It’s something that you have to have strong action for.”
Council held brief discussions regarding potentially banning fireworks. City Attorney Richard Appicello reminded the Council that fireworks are currently prohibited in public parks. Appicello suggested looking at prohibiting fireworks it in public right of ways and other City spaces for potential City ordinances.
City Manager Ron Chandler said expanding enforcement will be a man power issue, stating that the City will need to hire more people to make these plans effective. City staff will continue discussions for potential changes before next Fourth of July.