In 2020, the Albany County legislature voted to ban both the sale and use of any form of fireworks in the county. In addition to previous restrictions on fireworks, now any person who uses a sparkling device* can be issued a fine and any individual who sells or furnishes a sparkling device to another person can be charged punishable with a fine and 15 days in jail.
Legislators heard from members of local police and fire departments who are unable to enforce the use of illegal fireworks because there is no way to differentiate them from the ground-based devices that were allowed.
“I am thankful that the legislature has acted swiftly in responding to concerns from local leaders, law enforcement, neighborhood groups and those who suffer from PTSD by making all fireworks illegal in Albany County,” Sponsor Matthew Peter said. “While this won’t solve all problems or concerns with fireworks in Albany County, it is an important first step.”
The Legislature’s decision followed a public hearing where members of the public cited potential safety hazards as well as quality of life concerns among residents, specifically to veterans, pets and children.
*Sparkling Devices are ground based or handheld devices that produce a shower of colored sparks and or a colored flame, audible crackling or whistling noise and smoke. The law limits the type, size and construction of Sparkling Devices and requires that these devices must be hand held or mounted on a base or spike and be limited in sizes that range from 1 to 500 grams of pyrotechnic composition.