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Riverhead Town considers new late fee for fireworks permits

Riverhead Town Board members say they support creating a new $1,000 late fee for fireworks permit applications.

During Thursday’s work session, board members said they also support imposing a deadline that states fireworks permit applications filed less than 14 days prior to an event would be denied.

Fire marshal Craig Zitek said the permit applications for the last three fireworks shows came “two weeks or less” before the date of the show.

In those instances, Mr. Zitek said he had to work off hours with local fire chiefs to inspect those properties prior to the shows.

The last fireworks display on Aug. 5 wasn’t approved until that morning, he added.

Town Board members said they were displeased to learn the official permit application deadline of 30 days prior to an event was being abused.

“They know better,” Councilman Tim Hubbard said.

Town Supervisor Sean Walter said he’d support a $1,000 fee on top the existing $200 permit fee for those who file applications between 30 and 14 days before an event.

He added he believes the town should give half of the $1,000 fee to the fire district for helping to evaluate the site on short notice.

For those that file too late, Mr. Walter said: “If you can’t do it, too bad, so sad.”

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