Fire pits soon could be regulated in Whitehall
Whitehall residents who spend their evenings relaxing by an outdoor fire pit soon could have rules to follow.
An ordinance placing restrictions on outdoor fire pits and open burning likely will be in place by April, Councilman Bill Veith said last week. The ordinance will limit the size of fire pits, how long they burn, and the distance a fire pit can be located from a structure.
“We're not outlawing it by any means. We're just trying to have something in place to regulate it. Common sense in some cases,” Veith said. “For the person sitting in the back yard, enjoying it with their family, nothing's going to change.”
Resident complaints prompted leaders to look at putting restrictions on open burning. Typically, Whitehall officials receive 20 to 30 calls each summer from residents who are upset about their neighbor's fire pit habits, borough Manager James Leventry said.
The complaints usually are about the smoke that pours from a nearby fire pit into homes, Leventry said.
“A lot of it is common sense — courtesy toward your neighbors,” Veith said. “We don't want people burning trash. If you're burning the right thing, it's not going to be causing a problem.”
Whitehall does not have any regulations to monitor outdoor burning, Leventry said.
Members of council's public safety committee, the town's police and fire chiefs, borough manager and mayor met last week to discuss their plans. The public safety committee has been reviewing options since June.
Borough solicitor Irving Firman is drafting an ordinance that could be available for council's review by their Feb. 20 meeting, Leventry said.
Violations could result in a fee that would not exceed $600, if convicted in court, Leventry said.
Stephanie Hacke is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5818 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
- Hearing set on Baldwin housing complex
- Council approves work on Pleasant Hills shopping center
- Jefferson Regional Foundation taking applications for grants
- Tiny ‘council’ endorses big changes in Whitehall
- Baldwin officials take step to improve parks
- Posting salaries concerns union
- Officials remain at odds over Brentwood borough building