Anaheim : Fireworks Ban 'Delights' New Mayor Pro Tem

The issue created many a spark in the past and Miriam Kaywood was not ready to let the city's new ban on fireworks slip quietly into the books without at least a remark or two.

"I just want to say that after five long years of trying to get this on the ballot, I'm delighted," Kaywood, the city's new mayor pro tem, said at a recent council meeting.

During the Nov. 4 election, 31,268 people cast their ballots for Measure A, supporting a ban on fireworks, while another 20,995 voted no.

The council accepted the results during its meeting Nov. 18, which means that next Independence Day, Anaheim residents will have to go elsewhere to buy and use fireworks.

Until earlier this month, the so-called "safe and sane" fireworks were legal in Anaheim.

Kaywood tried for years to place the issue on the ballot and let voters decide its fate. Each year, her motion was shot down by a 3-2 council vote. This year, after the disastrous fireworks-related fire in July at the Casa de Valencia apartments, the council agreed to put the issue to the voters.

Opponents of the ban said the losers under the city's new law are the charitable organizations that sold fireworks before each July 4. They also have argued that bans of so-called "safe and sane" fireworks will lead to under-the-counter sales of such illegal fireworks as bottle rockets.

The California Pyrotechnics Assn. spent more than $70,000 to defeat Measure A. Anaheim's Fire Department, which wrote the argument favoring the ban, did not spend any money, according to statements on campaign expenditures filed with the Anaheim city clerk's office.

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