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In Fireworks-Way Illinois, ‘Fountain’ Sparklers Are Debated

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This photo provided by Philip Zaleski, Illinois Fire Safety Alliance Executive Director, shows ground based sparklers in Huntley, Ill., on March 30, 2021. Fireworks enthusiasts want Illinois lawmakers to loosen some of the nation's stricter laws by legalizing backyard ground-based sparklers called "fountains." The bill sponsored by Democratic Rep. Bob Rita of Blue Island is awaiting a House floor vote.

SPRINGFIELD — Fireworks enthusiasts want Illinois lawmakers to loosen some of the nation’s strictest laws by legalizing backyard ground-based sparklers called “fountains.”

The bill sponsored by Democratic Rep. Bob Rita of Blue Island is awaiting a House floor vote. Illinois prohibits most consumer fireworks such as firecrackers but allows novelties such as hand-held sparklers. Rita and supporters say Illinois is losing sales-tax revenue to neighbor states that allow them such as Indiana.

Opponents like the Illinois Firefighters Association say the potential for injury is far greater with a fountain than a hand-held sparkler because of the way fountains shoot sparks into the air.

 

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Associated Press

Associated Press

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