Hurricane City Council unanimous in approving firework restrictions, opposing critical race theory

HURRICANE — During the Hurricane City Council meeting last Thursday night, council members issued a proclamation limiting holiday fireworks usage and resolved to oppose the teaching of critical race theory.

The Hurricane City Council during discussions at City Hall, Hurricane, Utah, June 3, 2021 | Photo by E. George Goold, St. George News

As previously reported in St. George News, a number of local municipalities have issued restrictions about where and when to light off fireworks during upcoming July holiday celebrations.

With the proclamation made last Thursday, the Hurricane City Council joins others that are reacting to the extreme drought and dangerous fire conditions in southwest Utah.

According to a proclamation that passed unanimously, the City Council is limiting the number of legal locations to set off fireworks within Hurricane City limits to four: the Spilsbury Park ball fields, the American Legion ball field, Three Falls Park and Dixie Springs Park.

The proclamation goes on to specify the times and instances when fireworks will be allowed: from July 2-5 and July 22-25 between 11 a.m. and 11 p.m.

The exceptions to those times are July 4 for Independence Day and July 24 for Pioneer Day, when the hours for allowable fireworks usage will be between 11 a.m. and midnight.

According to the proclamation: “It is in the best interests of the City, its residents, businesses, and visitors that the dangers and potential damage and/or injury associated with fires be minimized by the exercise of caution and advanced planning calculated to help reduce the threat of such potential dangers and harm.”

‘We can’t change our history, but we can learn from it’

At Thursday’s meeting, the council also voted unanimously to pass a resolution stating its opposition to teaching critical race theory in Hurricane public schools.

Critical race theory is an academic movement characterized by the claim that institutionalized white supremacy exists and that it is necessary to expose and overturn power imbalances based on race.

The topic was addressed at the most recent meeting of the Washington County School Board, with members of the public expressing their concerns.

The resolution approved by the Hurricane City Council has no legal force or binding authority; it only states the position of the council. What can or cannot be taught in public schools is a matter for the school board to decide.

Council member Nanette Billings was responsible for getting the resolution onto the agenda. In a phone interview after the meeting, she told St. George News why she felt the council needed to state its position.

“I feel it’s important to stand up and lead with a positive approach in the community,” Billings said. “We stand for equality. We do not allow discrimination or anything that’s derogatory to our history. We can’t change our history, but we can learn from it.”

The adopted resolution states: “While CRT may be well meaning, it places excessive emphasis on differences in oppression when greater emphasis should be placed on equality and the common opportunities, values and freedoms we enjoy as Americans.”

Council member Joseph Prete read the resolution into the record. Billings motioned to accept the resolution, and council member Dave Sanders seconded the motion.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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