Fireworks Law Changes, Nonprofits Benefit

Courtesy THE BUSINESS JOURNAL


Apparently 2010 was a big year at all levels of government for passing legislation in order to find out what is in it.

In the City of Fresno, the use of “safe and sane fireworks” is now allowed year-round between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m., and until midnight from June 28 through July 6, when nonprofit groups are permitted to sell snakes, sparklers, noise makers and other non-exploding, non-flying items for fundraising.

Some members of the City Council expressed surprise recently that the revision passed in December — even though it was the council that voted the change in.

Scores of Fresno charities, churches and other nonprofits are listed on the city’s website as beneficiaries of the fireworks sales.

A relatively new nonprofit called Gay Central Valley took part in firework sales for the first time last year and raised more than $10,000, which it used to open a small office in the Tower District with Internet access and a book and video library. The group also operates websites for the LGBT community.

“It’s the largest fundraising avenue that we have,” said Jason Scott, president of the group, which became a 501(c)(3) two years ago. “We’ve been working out of our homes. We’re all volunteers.”

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