This post was originally published on the Public Notice: Bankrupting America Blog.
This Fourth of July not all Americans are as fortunate as those living in Chicago. As reported earlier this month by the Chicago Sun-Times, residents will enjoy a privately funded fireworks display at the historic Navy Pier. This comes as the city canceled its two planned displays due to budget shortfalls.
Local municipalities are feeling the effects of reckless spending, as state overspending has squeezed budgets in towns across the country. Unlike Chicago and other major cities, local smaller displays are unable to attract corporate sponsorship. While, asking for individual donations has saved some shows, many towns, like Pottstown, Pennsylvania still have near insurmountable fundraising gaps for such patriotic expressions.
Some may dismiss fireworks displays as unnecessary. But many, like this Pennsylvania Borough Manager, remain committed: “It’s the last thing I’d ever think of getting rid of. People love it. Money is tight, but this is important to the whole community.”
Responsible spending can ensure that Fourth of July celebrations and other important community events continue. Cities in Utah pay less than a tenth of one percent of their annual budgets for their fireworks displays. Sustainable spending practices can ensure excitement on our nation’s birthday for generations to come.