State Capitol News
9:38 am
Wed April 21, 2010

Sparklers Under Scrutiny

Phoenix, AZ – It turns out that Arizona is the only state west of the
Mississippi where it is a crime to possess sparklers. Sen. Frank
Antenori told colleagues they should support changing the law,
saying this measure would legalize only sparklers and not
firecrackers, Roman candles or other items that are permitted
elsewhere.

(They don't explode. They don't fly in the air. So the risk of
fire is considerably less, particularly if they're handled safely
and under adult supervision, which, again, that's personal
responsibility. Some of us kind of believe in people being
responsible for themselves.)

But not everyone thinks that's a good idea. Sen. Barbara Leff
recalled watching Mummy Mountain near her Paradise Valley home go
up in flames years ago.

(And what is was were kids playing with sparklers. So sparklers
are benign. They're benign in a lot of places. But I'm not so
sure they're benign in Arizona where we live in a desert and the
desert is so dry. I've never forgotten that image.)

Tuesday's 21-7 Senate vote comes after the House already has
approved virtually the same language. Some final work will send
the measure to Brewer. For Arizona Public Radio this is Howard
Fischer.