By Mike Kruzman / email@example.com
Confusion over the state’s issuance of a yard waste burn ban led one Livingston County resident to seek clarification from county officials.
During last week’s special meeting of the Livingston County Board of Commissioners, Brighton’s Mindy Vachow said she was recently “quite harassed” for having a fire in her yard, not knowing there was a burn ban in effect. With April being a traditionally precipitous month, she told the Board, who was conducting their meeting online, this makes her feel infringed upon. Vachow said she didn’t see how having a small recreational fire was a problem, and asked the Board for a directive to allow it.
Livingston County Emergency Manager Therese Cremonte said that small recreational campfires are okay, as long as everyone is practicing proper social distancing. However, the yard waste ban was more for the protection of first responders. Cremonte said burning is usually okay this time of year, but because responders are already stressed with everything else going on with the outbreak, it needs to be in place. She says that even though people may be well meaning, sometimes those types of fires can get out of control and aggravate respiratory problems.
On Friday, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources clarified the issue and said that while permits for open burning of yard debris remain suspended across most of the state, campfires for recreation and warming, as well as some agricultural burning, are still allowed.