Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has expressed disappointment in a recommendation by the Governance and Administration select committee to not change laws governing the private sale and use of fireworks.
LGNZ is the peak body representing New Zealand’s 78 local councils, providing a unified voice for the sector and a pathway for continuous improvement through CouncilMARK™.
Last year a remit was passed at the LGNZ AGM, where the nation’s councils voted for LGNZ to advocate for central government to introduce legislation to ban the sale of fireworks to the general public and end their private use.
“Every year the majority of councils hear from their communities that the negative impacts of fireworks outweigh the benefits,” says LGNZ President Dave Cull.
“Whether it’s injuries to children, adults, pets or other animals, or fires and property damage, or even just a plain lack of sleep due to fireworks going off every night, communities are sick of the issues and want to see the laws changed so that they can enjoy fireworks in a controlled manner.”
“We know that fireworks are often enjoyable when done right, so given public displays are much bigger and brighter, we think that a law change banning private use is the right move.”
LGNZ Chief Executive Malcolm Alexander spoke at the select committee last year, highlighting the need for change.
“The amount of injury and damage just isn’t worth the cost, and that was clearly communicated to the committee by a wide range of submitters, including LGNZ. It’s disappointing this feedback hasn’t been taken on board, and that we’re going to see more avoidable harm for the foreseeable future.”