In 2007, consumers nationwide spent $620 million on backyard fireworks. Every year, Massachusetts residents cross the border into New Hampshire to buy fireworks and bring them back home. Not only are we losing potential tax revenue and job creation by keeping fireworks illegal, but we waste law enforcement resources prosecuting a victimless crime. In years past, the Massachusetts State Police has gone so far as to stakeout New Hampshire fireworks stores and follow cars back into Massachusetts. We have bigger problems in our state than bottle rockets and jumping jacks. Surely, there are bigger fish to fry for the staties.
Back during the 2003 fiscal crisis, Massachusetts legalized the sale of alcohol on Sundays, in recognition of the tax revenue we were losing to New Hampshire. We will probably do the same with casino gaming; again, in recognition of the revenue we’re losing to Connecticut and Rhode Island. Fireworks should be no different.