Aerial Fireworks

Makes importing, possession, and sale of aerial common fireworks
illegal; a misdemeanor if the aerial is worth less than $300 and
a class C felony if worth $300 or more; makes possession of
special fireworks without a permit a class C felony.

THE SENATE                              S.B. NO.           
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2000                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            

                     A BILL FOR AN ACT



 1      SECTION 1.  The legislature finds that the widespread
 2 discharge of fireworks in all counties in the State creates a
 3 serious safety hazard for persons and property as well as a
 4 severe health risk--particularly for the young, the elderly, and
 5 others with respiratory ailments--as a result of concentrated
 6 sulfuric smoke emissions.  The Honolulu fire department has
 7 stated that they received many reports of dangerous misfires
 8 caused by illegal aerial fireworks during this year's New Year
 9 celebrations, with serious injuries and death having occurred.
10      The legislature recognizes that fireworks in Hawaii are used
11 in celebrations of cultural and historical significance to the
12 people of the State, including the New Year, Chinese New Year,
13 and Fourth of July.  The legislature nevertheless believes that
14 the costs of fireworks to society outweigh any benefits derived
15 from the continued legalization of fireworks.
16      The purpose of this Act is to reinforce the prohibition on
17 the use of aerial common fireworks in the State and increase the
18 penalties for the importation, sale, and possession of aerial
19 common fireworks.  In addition, this Act provides that fifty per

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 1 cent of all fines imposed shall be paid to the State and fifty
 2 per cent shall be paid to the county, due to the fact that
 3 enforcement of the aerial common fireworks law is the
 4 responsibility of the county police and fire departments, which
 5 places a substantial burden on county resources.  
 6      SECTION 2.  Chapter 711, Hawaii Revised statutes, is amended
 7 by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to
 8 read as follows:
 9      "711-    Violation of importation, sale, or possession of
10 aerial common fireworks.  (1)  A person commits the offense of
11 violation of importation, sale, or possession of aerial common
12 fireworks if a person:
13      (a)  Imports aerial common fireworks;
14      (b)  Stores or offers to sell or sells, aerial common
15           fireworks at wholesale or retail; or
16      (c)  Possesses, purchases, sets-off, ignites, or discharges
17           aerial common fireworks;
18 in the State.
19      (2)  As used in this section:
20      "Aerial common fireworks" means any firework, classified as
21 common fireworks by the United States Bureau of Explosives or
22 contained in the regulations of the United States Department of
23 Transportation and designated as UN 0336 1.4G, which produces an

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 1 audible or visible effect and which is designed to rise into the
 2 air and explode or detonate in the air or to fly about above the
 3 ground.  "Aerial common fireworks" include firework items
 4 commonly known as bottle rockets, sky rockets, missile-type
 5 rockets, helicopters, torpedoes, daygo bombs, roman candles,
 6 jumping jacks which move about the ground farther than inside a
 7 circle with a radius of twelve feet as measured from the point
 8 where the item was placed and ignited, types of balloons which
 9 require fire underneath to propel the same, aerial shells and
10 mines.
11      (3)  (a)  Violation of this section by a person who imports
12           into the State, to store, offer to sell, or sell, at
13           wholesale or retail, aerial common fireworks is a class
14           C felony.
15      (b)  Violation of this section by a person who possesses,
16           purchases, sets off, ignites, or discharges aerial
17           common fireworks with a retail value of $300 or more is
18           a class C felony.
19      (c)  Violation of this section by a person who possesses,
20           purchases, sets off, ignites, or discharges aerial
21           common fireworks with a retail value of less than $300
22           is a misdemeanor.
23      (4)  Any person selling aerial common fireworks or special

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 1 fireworks out of their residence may be subject to forfeiture of
 2 their residence pursuant to chapter 712A.
 3      (5)  Fifty per cent of all fines imposed for violating this
 4 chapter shall be paid to the State and fifty per cent of the
 5 fines imposed shall be paid to the county in which the fine was
 6 imposed.
 7      (6)  Nothing in this section shall be construed to apply to
 8 the possession, storage, sale, or use of explosives and
 9 combustibles in accordance with chapter 396 or to apply to
10 permissible activities under chapter 132D or its successor."
11      SECTION 3.  Section 132D-4, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
12 amended to read as follows:
13      "[[]132D-4[]]  Permissible uses of special [and aerial
14 common] fireworks.  Special [and aerial common] fireworks may be
15 purchased, set off, ignited, or otherwise caused to explode in
16 the State only if permitted in writing pursuant to section
17 132D-10."
18      SECTION 4.  Section 132D-7, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
19 amended to read as follows:
20      "[[]132D-7[]]  License or permit required.(a)  It shall
21 be unlawful for any person to import any fireworks into the
22 State, to store, offer to sell or sell, at wholesale or retail
23 any fireworks, unless the person has a valid license issued by

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                                     S.B. NO.           

 1 the department.  No license or permit shall be issued for aerial
 2 common fireworks.
 3      (b)  It shall be unlawful for any person to set off, ignite
 4 or discharge [aerial common or] special fireworks at any time or
 5 to set off, ignite or discharge non-aerial common fireworks at
 6 any time other than the periods for use prescribed in section
 7 132D-3(1) in any county unless the person has a valid permit
 8 issued by the county in which the permitted activity is to
 9 occur."
10      SECTION 5.  Section 132D-8, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
11 amended by amending subsection (c) to read as follows:
12      "(c)  It shall be unlawful for any person, other than a
13 wholesaler who is selling or transferring fireworks to a licensed
14 retailer, to sell or offer to sell any fireworks:
15      (1)  More than seven calendar days prior to the designated
16           period for use as described in section 132D-3(1);
17      (2)  At other than the designated periods for use set forth
18           in section 132D-3(1), unless the purchaser presents a
19           valid permit; or
20      (3)  At any other time, and whenever the sale of special
21           fireworks is involved, to any person who does not
22           present a permit duly issued as required by section
23           132D-7.  The permit shall be signed by the seller or

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                                     S.B. NO.           

 1           transferor at the time of sale or transfer of the
 2           fireworks, and the seller or transferor shall indicate
 3           on the permit the amount and type of fireworks sold or
 4           transferred.  No person shall sell or deliver fireworks
 5           to any permittee in any amount in excess of the amount
 6           specified in the permit, less the amount shown on the
 7           permit previously to have been purchased[.];
 8 provided that aerial common fireworks shall not be sold or
 9 offered to be sold by any person, wholesaler, or retailer."
10      SECTION 6.  Section 132D-9, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
11 amended to read as follows:
12      "[[]132D-9[]]  Application for permit.  The permit required
13 under section 132D-7 shall be issued by the county fire
14 department and be nontransferable.  The county shall issue all
15 permits for which complete applications have been submitted and
16 which contain only correct information.  The permit shall specify
17 the date of issuance or effect and the date of expiration but in
18 no case for a period to exceed one year.  The application shall
19 be made on a form setting forth the dates for which the permit
20 shall be valid, the location where the permitted activity is to
21 occur, and the name of the proprietor or, if a partnership, the
22 name of the partnership and the names of all partners or, if a
23 corporation, the name of the corporation and the names of its

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                                     S.B. NO.           

 1 officers.  The permit application may be denied if the proposed
 2 use of fireworks presents a substantial inconvenience to the
 3 public or presents an unreasonable fire or safety hazard.  Any
 4 permit issued pursuant to this chapter shall be prominently
 5 displayed in public view at the site.  No permit shall be issued
 6 for aerial common fireworks."
 7      SECTION 7.  Section 132D-10, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
 8 amended to read as follows:
 9      "[[]132D-10[]]  Permits.  A permit shall be required for
10 the purchase, setting off, ignition, or discharge of:
11      (1)  Any non-aerial common fireworks when the proposed date
12           of the use of the fireworks is not within the periods
13           prescribed in section 132D-3(1); and
14      (2)  Any [aerial common and any] special fireworks under all
15           circumstances and at any time." 
16      SECTION 8.  Section 132D-14, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
17 amended by amending subsection (a) to read as follows: 
18      "(a)  Any person importing [aerial common fireworks or]
19 special fireworks into the State without first having obtained a
20 license as required by section 132D-7, or possessing special
21 fireworks without a permit under section 132D-10, shall be guilty
22 of a class C felony."
23      SECTION 9.  Section 132D-20, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is

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 1 amended to read as follows:
 2      "[[]132D-20[]]  Enforcement.  This chapter shall be
 3 enforced by the [department] county and designated county
 4 agencies.  The counties are authorized to enforce and administer
 5 the provisions of this chapter regulating permits for display,
 6 agricultural uses, uses by commercial establishments and
 7 wholesale and retail sales of fireworks."
 8      SECTION 10.  This Act does not affect rights and duties that
 9 matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were
10 begun, before its effective date.
11      SECTION 11.  Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed.
12 New statutory material is underscored.
13      SECTION 12.  This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2000.
15                           INTRODUCED BY:  _______________________