Today, on the eve of Independence Day, State Representative Barbara Wheeler (R-Crystal Lake) has filed legislation to allow Illinoisans to celebrate the occasion with the time honored tradition of fireworks without the risk of fine or arrest. Illinois is one of only four states that does not allow for the consumer purchase and use of fireworks and Wheeler’s legislation would give that independence back to residents.

“Illinois is already an outlier in so many ways, and this another silly example,” said Wheeler. “Illinoisans, like residents in 46 other states, can and should be trusted to responsibly use consumer fireworks and take care of themselves. Not only does it make sense to give a little independence back to the people for Independence Day, but it will also generate some business and tax revenue for the state that will help mitigate some of the exodus of people leaving the state.”

Wheeler’s legislation, House Bill 5928, creates the Pyrotechnic Use Act of 2018. The bill, modeled on best practices utilized in other states, sets rules for the licensing, sale and purchase of consumer grade fireworks beyond the extreme limit of only items like sparkles, which is current Illinois law.