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Emmetsburg City Code 41.12 prohibits use of fireworks within city limits.
The sale, use or exploding of fireworks within the City is subject to the following:
  1. Definition. The term “fireworks” includes any explosive composition, or combination of explosive substances, or articles prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or audible effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration or detonation, and specifically includes blank cartridges, firecrackers, torpedoes, skyrockets, roman candles, or other fireworks of like construction and any fireworks containing any explosive or flammable compound, or other device containing any explosive substance.
    (Code of Iowa, Sec. 727.2)
  2. Regulations. It is unlawful for any person to offer for sale, expose for sale, sell at retail, or use or explode any fireworks; provided the City may, upon application in writing, grant a permit for the display of fireworks by a City agency, fair associations, amusement parks and other organizations or groups of individuals approved by City authorities when such fireworks display will be handled by a competent operator. No permit shall be granted hereunder unless the operator or sponsoring organization has filed with the City evidence of insurance in the following amounts:
    1. A. Personal Injury: …………………………. $250,000 per person.
    2. B. Property Damage: ………………………. $50,000
    3. C. Total Exposure: ………………………….. $1,000,000
      (Code of Iowa, Sec. 727.2)
  3. Exceptions. This section does not prohibit the sale by a resident, dealer, manufacturer or jobber of such fireworks as are not prohibited; or the sale of any kind of fireworks if they are to be shipped out of State; or the sale or use of blank cartridges for a show or theatre, or for signal purposes in athletic sports or by railroads or trucks for signal purposes, or by a recognized military organization. This section does not apply to any substance or composition prepared and sold for medicinal or fumigation purposes.
    (Code of Iowa, Sec. 727.2)

Although Iowa Code now allows the sale and use of fireworks in Iowa, the City of Emmetsburg has not adopted the changes. Although fireworks are sold in Emmetsburg, you are not allowed to use them in town. We understand the confusion and offer a brief explanation:

The City Emmetsburg has the right to enforce restrictions on the sale of fireworks, but the City may not prohibit the sale of fireworks altogether. This is why permits with requirements/ restrictions must be approved by the City of Emmetsburg before a company may offer fireworks for sale. The City does have the authority to maintain the Code as written which prohibits the use of fireworks within the City limits. The criminal act of violating this Code is a Simple Misdemeanor. When you purchase fireworks, you must take them outside the City limits to use.

Please enjoy a safe and healthy 4th of July celebration, and please abide by Emmetsburg City Code 41.12. For more information or questions, contact the Emmetsburg Police Department at 712-852-2424.