Commission establishes fire season

The Park County Commission on Tuesday established the 2018 fire season, which spans the 2018 calendar year.

The action was taken during the commission’s regularly schedule 9 a.m. meeting.

The purpose of a county fire season is to allow for open burning of natural vegetation fires greater than 48 inches in diameter, according to the commission agenda packet. Residents must first obtain a Park County burn permit before igniting an open burn. Those may be obtained online www.burnpermits.mt.gov, in person at the City-County building in Livingston or at Park County Rural Fire District #1.

Permits cost $7 and are valid for the current calendar year. Fires under 48 inches in diameter are considered recreational fires and do not require a permit.

Residents must activate their burn permits before igniting an open burn. That can also be done online at www.burnpermits.mt.gov or through a toll-free number,

(877) 281-5416. Activating your burn permit notifies first responders that your fire is intentional and under control, preventing an unnecessary emergency response.

For more information, contact the county fire warden at 222-4188.

The Montana DEQ manages open burning statewide for air quality and public health, the agenda packet said. In addition to obtaining and activating a Park County burn permit, residents must also follow the rules set forth by the DEQ. Open burning is primarily for yard waste and the DEQ maintains a list of specific items banned from open burning.

From September to November, burners must check to see if open burning is closed due to air quality. You may check online at www.burnclosures.mt.govor by calling the Ventilation Hotline at (800) 225-6779.

From December to February, all burners in south of Interstate 90 must obtain a special DEQ permit and follow a process to receive permission to burn. All burners north of I-90 must notify DEQ prior to ignition. From March to August, the DEQ does not have any additional requirements.

In other business at their Tuesday meeting, the commissioners:

• Approved applying for a grant of up to $200,000 to the Montana Disaster and Emergency Services State Homeland Security Program. The grant request will prioritize funds for communications towers in the Shields Valley for emergency services. Second in funding priority will be personal protection equipment for local fire district personnel.

• Appointed Becky Bird to the Park County Fair Board.

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