Auckland Council’s call for a law change to ban the sale and private use of fireworks has been supported by a majority of New Zealand’s councils at this weekend’s Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) conference.
The council’s remit seeking support for the ban received 64 per cent of the vote, becoming official policy of LGNZ and strengthening the case to central government for legislative change.
Councillor Cathy Casey says it is now up to the government to put a ban in place, which also has overwhelming support from the public of Auckland.
“Auckland Council voted in February to ask the Government to introduce legislation to ban the private sale and use of fireworks, a move supported by 90 per cent of public submissions”, she says.
“Aucklanders have had enough of the unnecessary distress and injury inflicted on people and animals as well as the fires and damage to property caused by the private misuse of fireworks in so many communities across New Zealand.
"The pressure fireworks put on our country’s emergency services is huge, as is the pressure on the council’s resources to respond to the hundreds of noise complaints about the setting off of fireworks on private property, and it's not just one night of the year, it happens year-round.
“The time is right, there is a mood for change to better protect our communicates, animals and native wildlife. Last year 18,000 people signed a petition seeking a total ban on fireworks sales that was presented to parliament.
“Public fireworks displays are much better and safer. People will be able to continue to enjoy displays of fireworks at well-managed events which bring people together to celebrate the diversity of Aotearoa," says Councillor Casey.
A total of 78 councils voted on Auckland Council’s remit requesting that LGNZ work with central government to introduce legislation to ban the sale of fireworks to the general public and end their private use.