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Suisun in the News

08 Feb 2012

City Council Voices Support for Fireworks Sales

By Ian Thompson, Daily Republic

SUISUN CITY — The City Council has no problem with approving the sale of Safe and Sane fireworks in town in order to raise money to support public events such as the Fourth of July fireworks show.

The council gave city staff the go signal Tuesday to start crafting an ordinance that will go back before the council in the near future for examination and then public hearing.

Council members also gave an ad hoc committee on public events two more weeks to see if its members can raise $50,000 in seed money that is needed before Suisun City can start approaching the general public to chip in to get about $80,000 to pay for this year’s waterfront fireworks show.

The committee has raised $25,000 in pledges since it started work last month for this year’s Fourth of July fireworks festival, including a $10,000 matching challenge grant from Pacific Gas & Electric Co. The committee targeted $50,000 in initial pledges.

Councilman Sam Derting, a member of the committee, said that a lot of residents would be willing to chip in to get the fireworks show, which is the city’s most popular event.

Elimination of Suisun City’s redevelopment agency prompted the council to cut its entire events budget late last year, killing nearly its entire calendar of events, the biggest of which were the Fourth of July fi reworks display and the Christmas on the Waterfront festival.

The council then created the ad hoc committee to work out ways to fund the events from other sources. Instead of trying to save all the events, the committee concentrated on saving the fireworks show, which costs between $80,000 and $100,000.

To secure long-term funding for the fireworks festival, the committee decided to support what
Dixon did last year -- approve selling Safe and Sane fireworks.

In April 2011, the Dixon City Council approved a two-year pilot program to help local nonprofits by allowing them to sell Safe and Sane fireworks at eight locations. The effort saw $215,500 in sales last July.

The Suisun City committee proposal would allow fireworks sales by nonprofit groups and include a surcharge or percentage of the sales to be turned over to the city.

A staff report indicates that Suisun City could support four fireworks stand locations and gross about $200,000.