The Fourth of July may be over, but the debate on fireworks is not

Fireworks complaints over the holiday

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - Whether you're tired of hearing fireworks or tired of hearing about them-- it seems like everyone has something to say on Facebook. 

After seeing a range of opinions on social media, we decided to figure out just how bad the situation is and why. 

Local police departments explained that under state law firework violations are civil infractions, comparable to a speeding ticket. Meaning that officers must witness the violation in order to write a citation, and even when they do witness a violation it is at the officer's discretion to actually write a ticket. 

Making noise complaints to local law enforcement is only effective if the violation is still occurring by the time the officers arrive on scene.

Representative Winnie Brinks, (D) Grand Rapids, said that enforcement is an issue, but that people also have to consider the other calls that may take priority to a noise complaint. 

There are a couple laws introduced this year that would go as far as repealing the current law entirely, or not allowing civilian use of fireworks in densely populated areas. 

Under current law, local government is able to generate their own time restrictions, but it is enforcing those measures that proves to be an issue. 

Brinks, who receives calls from several constituents each year, said until it becomes more of a priority or there is more of an effort behind this change things will likely not get better. 

We spoke with all local state representative offices and a number of them had yet to hear from any constituents on either side of the issue.  

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