City Ordinance Burn Policy

Sec. 20-5. - Burning. 

(a) No burning of garbage, refuse, trash, or yard waste by a resident or by any other person in, at, or around a residential dwelling place is permitted in the city. No outside residential burning of rubbish or garbage is permitted upon any residential property. The term "outside burning" means burning outside of the home. 

(b) The nonresidential burning of garbage, refuse, trash, and yard waste shall only be permitted in accordance with state statute. Nothing in this section shall prohibit the use of a fireplace or wood stove within a home, however, provided that only customary fuels are burned in a fireplace or in a wood stove. 

(c) No person shall screen or sift any coal, ashes or like substances or build bonfires within the city in such a manner that the dust, screenings, siftings or smoke arising therefrom are blown across or settle upon the premises or property of another person. 

(d) Recreational fires are permitted in the city in accordance with the following rules and regulations: 

(1) All recreational fires must be in a fire container, portable fire place, pit or device which is designed and intended for recreational fires or cooking. 

(2) A fire container, portable fire place, pit or device for recreational fires shall not exceed 48 inches in diameter and such items must be at least 15 feet away from any building, deck or gazebo and at least ten feet away from a lot line. 

(3) A fire container, portable fire place, pit or device for recreational fires shall have a barrier that will contain the burning materials and which will prevent burning materials and ashes from falling out. A barrier may consist of a metal ring, a layer of rocks, decorative blocks or cement. 

(4) Only firewood (untreated, solid, dry wood) may be burned in a recreational fire. 

(5) The flames for recreational fires are not to exceed three feet in height. 

(6) Except as otherwise permitted, no recreational fires are permitted on Sundays through Thursdays between 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. Recreational fires are not permitted between 12:00 midnight and 8:00 a.m. on Fridays, Saturdays or holidays. Holidays are defined as being New Year's Day, Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, Labor Day and Thanksgiving. 

(7) A means of extinguishing a recreational fire such as a garden hose which is hooked up to a water supply, a bucket of water, a fire extinguisher, sand or dirt must be readily available at the time that a recreational fire is burning. 

(8) Recreational fires must be extinguished or the burning materials must be covered with a metal cover during the prohibited burning times. 

(9) An adult who is age 18 or older must be present on the premises at all times that a recreational fire is burning. 

(10) Even if the above regulations are met, a recreational fire must be extinguished if it is deemed to be a risk to public safety by an official of the city. 

(11) Ashes from recreational fires must be wet down prior to their disposal or must be placed in a noncombustible container, and such container must not be placed adjacent to other combustible substances. 

(12) The burning of charcoal in a grill, fire container, portable fire place or pit and the use of propane grills or propane fire places are exempt from these regulations. 

(13) The enforcing officer may make or cause to be made inspections to determine whether a fire is burning in compliance with these regulations. 

(14) When an inspection shall be made, the enforcing officer may request permission to enter the premises at any reasonable time for the purpose of performing his or her duties under this section. Permission to access the premises may be granted by the owner of the premises, the owner's agent, a tenant occupying the premises or by any other occupant of the premises. If there is an emergency, then the enforcing officer shall have the right to enter at any time. 

(15) In a nonemergency situation where the owner, the owner's agent, a tenant or other occupant of the premises demands a warrant for the inspection of the premises, the enforcing officer shall obtain a warrant from a court of competent jurisdiction. 

(16) Every tenant or other occupant of a property in the city shall give the enforcing officer access to any part of the premises at reasonable times for the purpose of making such inspections as are necessary to comply with the provisions of this article. 

(17) A violation of this section is a civil infraction. Officers of the city police department, the chief and deputy chief of the fire rescue department and the director of the community development department and/or the building official are authorized to issue and serve appearance tickets to enforce this ordinance and are hereby designated as authorized local officials to write civil infraction tickets for violations of this section. 

(Code 1974, §§ 11-3, 15-11; Ord. No. 34, § 1; Ord. No. 489, §§ 1, 3; Ord. No. 745, § 1, 6-18-2001; Ord. No. 991, § 1, 10-7-2019)