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Council meeting offers no fireworks

Mary Hinds • Updated Jul 26, 2013 at 9:57 PM

The Lebanon City Council approved several measures in a fast meeting Tuesday evening, but the only item on the agenda that might have produced fireworks was deferred.

That item was the second reading of an ordinance to allow the sale and use of fireworks within the city limits. On the first reading of the proposed ordinance, Councilor Kevin Huddleston voiced objections about the safety of fireworks, but it was passed anyway. Tuesday, Councilors Rob Cesternino immediately moved to defer the vote on a second reading.

"I move to defer the vote since we just got the revised proposal," Cesternino said.

Councilor Kathy Warmath, who originally proposed the idea, said it would be "helpful" to have all the proposed changes in the ordinance printed in yellow so the council could easily discern the differences.

City Attorney Andy Wright said the proposed ordinance had been amended on the advice of the Lebanon Fire Department to increase safety.

Councilor Haywood Barry said he hoped the proposal would still prohibit the more dangerous fireworks "like those M-80 and things that can blow your arm off."

Warmath, seemingly addressing her remarks to Lebanon police Chief Scott Bowen in the audience, said other cities allowed fireworks.

"They have them in Mt. Juliet where it's working and is a source of revenue," she said. "If someone is assaulted with them, they should be charged with assault.

The meeting began with citizens and fellow council members thanking outgoing councilors Huddleston, Alex Buhler and Barry for their service on the council and praising the Christmas events held on the Lebanon Town Square over the weekend.

Among those who thanked the council were Jimmy Huddleston, Kevin's father, who said his son had had a good experience despite the fact his father "didn't want him to run in politics."

The council approved several items, including the second reading of a proposal to pay half the salary of a police officer in public housing neighborhoods.

Other items approved on second reading included:

• authorizing the purchase of a salt brine system for the street department.

• authorizing the sale of the old Fire Hall No. 2 to the gas department.

• authorizing funding for new equipment and software to satisfy new postal requirements.

• authorizing the purchase of a sewer push camera for the sewer department.

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