Fireworks bans passing in Marysville, Brier

MARYSVILLE — Ballot measures that seek to lay the groundwork for banning fireworks in Marysville and Brier appeared to be passing.

Proposition 1 (the title of the ballot measures in both cities) are just advisory measures, and don’t compel their respective city councils to take any action.

However, given the public support for a ban, it’s likely the Marysville City Council will take up a measure sooner rather than later, council president Jeffrey Vaughan said.

As of Friday evening, the Marysville measure was passing with 59.4 percent of the votes in favor. The vote tally to date is 5,671 “yes” votes to 3,876 “no” votes.

A total of 9,547 ballots have been tallied for this measure so far, more so than for any of the other races in the city.

The Brier proposition also was passing as of Friday, with 54 percent voting in favor of an outright ban on fireworks.

If the Marysville council were to quickly pass a ban, it would not take effect until 2017. State law requires all fireworks bans to only take effect one year after passage. That’s because it would prevent a business that had spent a lot of money and time ordering fireworks having the rug yanked out from under them shortly before July 4, said Dan Johnson, the chief depute state fire marshal.

The city convened a fireworks committee to study the issue leading up to the advisory vote, and it will likely continue in drawing up a formal ban and trying to figure out how to enforce it.

That presents a logistical challenge because Boom City on the Tulalip Indian Reservation, just outside Marysville city limits, holds a large annual fireworks sale.

“Fortunately our fireworks committee grappled with some of those same questions,” said Vaughan, who was on the fireworks committee.

“We realize it’s a process that will going to take some time,” he said.

Other communities that have enacted bans, including Lynnwood in June 2014, took a bit of time adjusting to celebrating the Independence Day in a different manner.

The Fourth of July is one of the busiest days of the year for emergency services, and some county fire officials are considering creating a fireworks-focused hotline.

Chris Winters: 425-374-4165; cwinters@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @Chris_At_Herald.

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