Change the fireworks law in Massachusetts
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To change the law in the State of Massachusetts regarding penalties for possession of fireworks and the intent to sell them. The law needs to change, we need to take action and require stricter penalties for those in POSSESSION of fireworks. We are currently dealing with a situation unlike no other - and we need to seek change. Many of you are witnessing and hearing fireworks going off every night, night after night at all hours, day in and day out. This need to stop. With your signature we can make a change!
I propose we change the law be a fine of $1,000 dollars (at a minimum): seizure of all said fireworks immediately; and allow police the right to arrest those caught in possession of the fireworks. Right now, police are allowed to only confiscate said fireworks, we need stricter laws put in place. By not enacting a hard fine, and arresting those caught in possession, we are allowing the perpetrators to do it again the next day without consequence. The convicted should also be required to take a class on the dangers of fireworks and the consequences they cause. If the convicted person becomes a repeat offender, the fine will double and so on each time they are caught. When the fines are unpaid, the convicted person will not be able to renew his or her drivers licenses in the State of Massachusetts until said fine is paid in full.
Fireworks are illegal for a reason, and thus should be a criminal offense, and recorded on the convicted offenders criminal record - just like that of a DUI.
Here is the current Massachusetts law in regards to Possession and the sale of Fireworks. I have enclosed a link below to the state's website.
Part I ADMINISTRATION OF THE GOVERNMENT
Title XX PUBLIC SAFETY AND GOOD ORDER
Chapter 148 FIRE PREVENTION
Section 39 SALES, POSSESSION, USE, ETC. OF COMBUSTIBLE OR
EXPLOSIVE SUBSTANCES TO PRODUCE VISIBLE OR
AUDIBLE EFFECTS; FIREWORKS; DEFINITIONS;
EXCEPTIONS; ENFORCEMENT PROCEDURES; PENALTIES
Section 39. No person shall sell, or keep or offer for sale, or have in his
possession, or under his control, or use, or explode, or cause to explode,
any combustible or explosive composition or substance, or any
combination of such compositions or substances, or any other article,
which was prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or audible
effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration, or detonation.
For the purposes of this section the word ''fireworks'' shall include
compositions, substances or other articles and shall also include blank
cartridges or toy cannons in which explosives are used, the type of toy
balloon which requires fire underneath to propel the same, firecrackers,
cherry bombs, silver salutes, M–80's, torpedoes, sky-rockets, Roman
candles, sparklers, rockets, wheels, colored fires, fountains, mines,
serpents, or other fireworks of like construction or any fireworks
containing any explosive or flammable compound, or any tablets or other
device containing any explosive substance.
Whoever shall sell or keep for sale or offer for sale any fireworks in
violation of this section shall be punished by a fine of not less than one
hundred dollars nor more than one thousand dollars or by imprisonment
for not more than one year or both. Any officer qualified to serve
criminal process may arrest without a warrant any person who shall sell
or keep for sale or offer for sale any fireworks in violation of this section
and any fireworks found in his possession or under his control upon
conviction of such a violation shall be forfeited to the commonwealth.
Whoever shall have in his possession or under his control, or whoever
shall use or explode or cause to explode any fireworks in violation of this
section shall be punished by a fine of not less than ten dollars nor more
than one hundred dollars. Any officer qualified to serve criminal process
shall seize all of the fireworks mentioned herein without a warrant, and
the fireworks seized shall, upon conviction of such violation, be forfeited
to the commonwealth.
Notice of such seizure of the fireworks shall immediately be sent to the
marshal by the officer making the seizure, and the fireworks seized shall
be held and securely stored by that department until the marshal or his
authorized representative takes them into his possession for disposal.
The term ''fireworks'' as used herein shall not include toy pistols, toy
canes, toy guns or other devices in which paper caps or plastic caps
containing twenty-five hundredths grains or less of explosive compound
are used, if they are so constructed that the hand cannot come in contact
with the cap when in place for the explosion, or toy pistol paper caps or
plastic caps which contain less than twenty hundredths grains of
explosive mixture, the sale and use of which shall be permitted at all
times; and provided, further, that this section shall not apply (1) to the
sale of any fireworks to be shipped directly out of the commonwealth, or
(2) to the sale of any such article for the use of, and its use by, persons
having obtained a permit for a supervised display of such fireworks from
the marshal or some officer designated by him therefor, under any
provision of section thirty-nine A, or (3) to the sale of flares, lanterns or
fireworks for the use of, and their use by, railroads, railways, boats, motor
vehicles or other transportation agencies, or other activity, lawfully
permitted or required to use any or all of such articles for signal purposes,
illumination or otherwise, or (4) to the sale or use of blank cartridges for a
duly licensed show or theatre or for signal or ceremonial purposes in
athletics or sports, or to the sale of special blank cartridges and their use
in the proper operation of industrial tools and equipment only, or (5) to
experiments at a factory for explosives, or (6) to the sale of blank
cartridges for the use of, or their use by, the militia or any organization of
war veterans or other organizations authorized by law to parade in public,
a color guard armed with firearms, or (7) in teaching the use of firearms
by experts, or (8) to the sale of shells for firearms, cartridges, gunpowder,
and for the purpose of using, and their use, or in connection with the
hunting of game or in target practice with firearms, or (9) to farmers and
fruit growers who, having obtained a permit under section thirteen of
chapter forty-eight, use firecrackers for the control of damage to their
crops by birds.
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