By CARY DAVIS
© St. Petersburg Times, published June 20, 2000
ZEPHYRHILLS -- Talk about effective government.
After the Zephyrhills City Council voted June 12 to ban the residential sale and use of fireworks, the unthinkable happened. As if on cue, the skies opened and the rain fell in buckets, soaking the parched landscape.
Seems a little government action accomplished what prayers and rain dances failed for weeks to do.
On Monday, City Manager Steve Spina decided enough rain had fallen and he lifted the fireworks ban for Zephyrhills. He said it was unlikely he would reinstate the ban before the July 4 holiday.
Spina made his decision after the Pasco County Commission voted earlier Monday to suspend its fireworks ban.
"I think it's better to be on the same page," he said. "Plus, the rains have been pretty good the last few days."
The city's fireworks ban was for seven days, and Spina had the option of extending it in 72-hour increments.
Unlike the county, Zephyrhills has not been named in any lawsuits filed by angry fireworks dealers.
The Dade City Commission will vote this afternoon whether to extend its weeklong ban on fireworks. Dade City fire Chief Bob Cabot on Monday said he would recommend that commissioners lift the ban.
"At this point, my advice is to follow the county's lead," Cabot said. "We've had sufficient rain."
San Antonio and Saint Leo took no action on the issue, deciding instead that the county's ban applied to city residents.