City weighs further restrictions on number of fireworks booths

A nonprofit-run fireworks booth is shown in Hollister.

Hollister City Council members Monday will consider a proposal to put further restrictions on nonprofit-run booths selling the “safe and sane” variety of fireworks.
The council is set to meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday at Hollister City Hall, 375 Fifth St.
One of the agenda items includes a proposed amendment to the city code to change restrictions on the number of allowable fireworks booths. Currently, the city allows 12 nonprofit organizations to oversee booths, while the code permits another booth for every 3,500 residents added to the population. Those booths are permitted to run on just days leading up to the July 4 holiday.
Hollister’s population was at about 35,000 in 2010, according to the latest census.
In the proposed amendment, the city would increase the base population to 50,000 while allowing the current 12 nonprofits to operate their booths. From the 50,000 mark, the addition of another 7,500 residents to the population would permit another booth to open beyond the 12 currently existing groups.
“Additional booths would cut into the current, already low, profit margin for these existing booths,” according to a staff report from City Clerk Geri Johnson.
Additionally, if one of the existing nonprofits drops out of the fireworks sales and fails to apply for a permit, the number of allowable permits would decrease by one until the population gets to the 57,500 number, according to the proposal.
Look back for more.

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