Fireworks: You may hate them but there’s not much most Katy area residents can do

KATY (Covering Katy News) – If you live in an incorporated city like Katy, fireworks are illegal. Police can take action to make people stop setting them off or even possessing them. But, just because you have a Katy address does not mean that you live in the City of Katy. Most people with a Katy address don’t live within the city limits. If you are eligible to vote for mayor and city council that means you live in an incorporated city.

Fireworks are legal in unincorporated county areas which means most people who have a Katy address are allowed to possess them and can get away with firing them regardless of homeowners’ deed restrictions rules that ban their use.

Places like Cinco Ranch, Firethorne, Kelliwood, Memorial Parkway, Nottingham Country, West Memorial, Cimarron, Falcon Ranch, Falcon Landing, Grayson Lakes, Westheimer Lakes, Seven Meadows, and Grand Lakes are all outside of the city limits of Katy. They are in unincorporated areas of Harris and Fort Bend Counties. There are also many other neighborhoods that are outside the city limits of Katy.

Homeowners association deed restrictions against the discharge of fireworks are essentially useless when it comes to getting a good night’s sleep on New Year’s Eve. If you don’t like to be awoken by fireworks you’ll get no help from deed restrictions or law enforcement.

“HOA deed restrictions are not enforceable by law enforcement,” said a statement from the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office.

Each year law enforcement is deluged by calls from angry homeowners on New Year’s Eve but unless the legislature changes the law there is not much that can be done to help those who don’t like the noise and possible danger that fireworks cause.

“As you prepare for New Year’s Eve, please be aware fireworks are legal in unincorporated Fort Bend County and Deputies CANNOT instruct your neighbor to stop discharging fireworks since it is a legal activity,” said a Facebook post from the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office. “We mention this every holiday in an effort to educate those that are used to living inside cities, where fireworks are prohibited. Our Dispatch will receive many angry calls from residents who don’t understand we cannot do anything about fireworks. In fact, counties are not even empowered to regulate fireworks except during periods of drought.”

For frustrated residents, the only answer is a long-term solution, lobby the Texas Legislature to change the law. If you live in the City of Katy and have a complaint, call the Katy Police Department.

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