Bolivar council considers bonfires after dusk
Bolivar Mayor Tim Pickup simply wants to enjoy a beer in his back yard next to a contained bonfire.
He is calling for a change in the borough's air pollution control ordinance that prohibits fires — other than those used for cooking — after dark.
“I know a lot of people who enjoy having a little fire in their back yard,” Pickup said. “And we can't do that without having a stinking hot dog outside.”
Pickup called for the change as a councilman at the Feb. 7 meeting. At the end of that meeting, council appointed him as mayor until the end of the year.
The current ordinance, approved in 1994, allows for the burning of brush, leaves and paper in a container during daylight hours on Saturday. Otherwise, open fires are allowed for cooking only, the ordinance states.
Residents who violate the ordinance are subject to fines ranging $40 to $100 under the ordinance, which can be enforced by borough police or Bolivar residents, according to the ordinance.
Councilwoman Sue Bartow said she received a fine for the violation some years ago.
“We had hot dogs outside, but (the officer) claimed there were 30-foot flames, which there were not,” she said.
She fought the citation before a magistrate and then in Common Pleas Court, but ultimately had to pay, she said.
Council members discussed allowing attended, recreational fires between 6 p.m. and 2 a.m. on any day of the week.
Solicitor Jeff Miller said he would draft some amendments for council to discuss at the March 7 council meeting.
“If I have a Wednesday off, and I want to go out and sit by the fire and drink a beer, I want to be able to do it,” Pickup said.
Pickup said the issue came up when he was visiting a friend's house in Pittsburgh, and they enjoyed a backyard bonfire.
“I told them we weren't allowed, and they said, ‘You live 30 miles out in the country. How are you not allowed to have a fire?'” he said. Any amendment would have to be advertised before council can vote on the matter.
Jewels Phraner is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-850-1218 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates use big 7th inning to sweep Marlins, stretch winning streak to 6
- Plum teacher held for trial on charges of witness intimidation
- Tweets connect Pittsburghers with the world, each other in 5 words
- Male suspect in custody from New Kensington shooting
- Rossi: Steelers’ tarnished Bell rings true
- Judge orders Highmark, UPMC lawyers to hash out consent decree
- Tomlin gives suggestion Steelers won’t be shy about going for 2
- Vandals ruin Ligonier Township farmers’ garden
- Overturned cement truck knocks out power in South Side Slopes
- UPMC offering buyouts to 3,500 employees in cost-cutting move
- Ferris resigns from Baldwin Council