Town of Amherst, NY
Erie County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Amherst 9-26-2011 by L.L. No. 21-2011. Amendments noted where applicable. For additional information regarding 2010, 2011 and 2012 state local law numbers, refer to the Disposition List at the end of this volume.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Blasting and explosives — See Ch. 78.
Building construction administration — See Ch. 83.
Fire prevention — See Ch. 110.
Landscapers — See Ch. 130.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 151.
Recreation and open space — See Ch. 155.
Waste management — See Ch. 169, Art. I.
Trees — See Ch. 179.
This Local Law shall be referred to as, "A Local Law Regulating Open Burning."
The purpose of this Local Law shall be to protect and promote the health, safety and welfare of the people of the Town of Amherst by prohibiting the burning of garbage, rubbish and refuse and regulating open burning and recreational fires.
For the purposes of this Local Law, the following words, phrases and terms and their derivations shall have the meanings given herein. The word “shall” is always mandatory and not merely directory.
Approved Container
A properly maintained and utilized barbeque grill, barbeque pit or outdoor fireplace that utilizes a spark-arresting screen and a lid or wherein products of combustion pass through a stack or chimney from an enclosed chamber.
Bonfire
An outdoor fire that has a horizontal dimension of more than three (3) feet in length, width or diameter.
Garbage
The animal and vegetable waste resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking and serving of food.
Open Burning
The burning of materials outside of an Approved Container wherein products of combustion are emitted directly into the ambient air without passing through a stack or chimney from an enclosed chamber. Open burning does not include road flares, smudge pots and similar devices associated with safety or occupational users typically considered open flames.
Recreational Fire or Camp Fire
An outdoor fire burning materials in an approved container or an open fire where the fuel being burned is contained within a horizontal dimension of less than three (3) feet in length, width or diameter and two (2) feet or less in height for pleasure, religious, ceremonial, cooking, warmth or similar purposes and excluding the burning of material for the sake of disposal.
Refuse
Solid waste, including garbage, rubbish, ashes, incinerator residue, street cleanings, dead animals, abandoned automobiles, and any parts thereof, agricultural waste, commercial waste, industrial waste, construction and demolition debris.
Town
The Town of Amherst outside of the Village of Williamsville.
Except as allowed in Section 36-5, no person shall burn, cause, suffer, allow or permit the burning of any materials in an open fire.
A. 
General. A person shall not kindle or maintain, or authorize to be kindled or maintained, any outdoor fires or open burning unless conducted and approved in accordance to this Chapter.
B. 
Burn Permits Required. Individual property owners shall be allowed to conduct bonfires and to burn brush and tree limbs with the issuance of a permit by the Town of Amherst's Commissioner of Building, who shall consider the factors of fire safety, environmental pollution and proximity of neighbors. Commercial burning of brush, wood and wood products shall be allowed only upon approval of the Department of Environmental Conservation of the State of New York and issuance of a permit by the Town of Amherst Commissioner of Building. Practice burns of brush, wood and structures by fire companies shall be allowed upon the issuance of a permit by the Town of Amherst Commissioner of Building.
C. 
A Recreational Fire or Camp Fire is exempt from the requirement of a permit. Except for fires in an Approved Container, the fuel used in a Recreational Fire or Camp Fire shall be seasoned wood (not freshly cut).
D. 
Location. The location for open burning shall not be less than ninety (90) feet from a residence, occupied building, housing unit, or mobile home other than that of the owner or occupant on the same premises that the open burning is occurring.
E. 
Attendance. Open burning, recreational fires and bonfires shall be continuously attended until the fire is extinguished.
A violation of this Chapter is hereby declared to be an offense, punishable by a fine of not less than Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($250.00) or imprisonment for a period not to exceed fifteen (15) days, or both.
The foregoing Law shall be enforced by any authorized police officer or peace officer defined by the laws of the State of New York. In addition, any code enforcement officer duly appointed by the Town Board of the Town of Amherst may enforce this law.