Article 2. Issuance, Revocation And Renewal of California Health And Safety Code >> Division 11. >> Part 2. >> Chapter 5. >> Article 2.
The State Fire Marshal may issue and renew licenses for the
manufacture, import, export, sale, and use of all fireworks and
pyrotechnic devices in this state.
Any person who desires to manufacture, import, export, sell
or use fireworks, shall first make written application for a license
to the State Fire Marshal on forms provided by him. Such application
shall be accompanied by the annual license fee as prescribed in this
The application for a license shall be signed by the
applicant. If the application is made by a partnership, it shall be
signed by each partner of the partnership. If the application is made
by a corporation, it shall be signed by an officer of the
corporation and bear the corporation's seal.
The authorization to engage in the particular act or acts
conferred by a license to a person shall extend to salesmen or other
employees of such person who are registered with the State Fire
Marshal. The sales personnel and other employees of licensed
retailers, however, need not be registered with the State Fire
Marshal. No person under the age of 18 shall sell, or handle for
sale, any classification of fireworks.
Any applicant may withdraw his application for a license or
renewal of a license and the State Fire Marshal may allow the
withdrawal when he has determined that it is in the best interest of
public safety or the administration of this part.
The suspension, expiration, or forfeiture by operation of
law of a license issued by the State Fire Marshal, or its suspension,
forfeiture, or cancellation by order of the State Fire Marshal or by
a court of law, or its surrender to the State Fire Marshal shall
not, during any period in which it may be renewed, restored,
reissued, or reinstated, deprive the State Fire Marshal of his
authority to institute or continue disciplinary action against the
licensee upon any ground provided by law, or to enter an order
suspending or revoking a license or otherwise taking disciplinary
action against the licensee on any such ground.
A written report by the State Fire Marshal, any of his
deputies, or salaried assistants, or by the chief of any city or
county fire department or fire protection district or their
authorized representatives, disclosing that the applicant for a
license or for renewal of a license does not meet, or the premises
for which the license is required do not meet, the qualifications or
conditions for such license as required by this part or regulations
adopted pursuant to this part, may constitute grounds for denial of
any application for the license or renewal of the license.
The State Fire Marshal may deny, without hearing, an
application for a license or renewal of a license, if within one year
prior to the date of application, the State Fire Marshal has denied
or revoked a license after proceedings conducted in accordance with
the provisions of Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1
of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code for the same
applicant on the ground of violation of this part.
The application for any license shall become void when any
of the following occurs:
(a) The State Fire Marshal has notified the applicant to appear
for examination and the applicant fails to appear or fails to submit
a written statement of just cause for not appearing.
(b) The applicant fails to achieve a passing score on a required
examination. A minimum qualifying score shall be established by
regulations pursuant to this part.
(c) The applicant has not submitted documentary evidence of his
qualifications as required by regulations adopted pursuant to this
(d) The applicant has failed to submit evidence of insurability as
required by this part.
(e) The applicant withdraws his application prior to an
investigation by the State Fire Marshal to determine if the license
shall be issued.
(f) The license is denied after a hearing is conducted as provided
by this part.
(g) The applicant has made misrepresentations or filed false
The State Fire Marshal may deny or revoke any license issued
pursuant to this part if the State Fire Marshal finds any of the
following conditions has occurred:
(a) The licensee has failed to pay the annual renewal license fee
provided in this chapter.
(b) The licensee or license applicant has violated any provisions
of this part or any regulations adopted by the State Fire Marshal
pursuant to this part.
(c) The licensee or license applicant has created or caused a fire
(d) The licensee has failed to keep full, complete, and accurate
records or failed to file any required reports.
(e) Any fact or condition exists which, if it had existed at the
time of the original application for the license reasonably would
have warranted the State Fire Marshal in refusing originally to issue
(f) The permit issued under Section 12640 has been rescinded or
revoked by the issuing authority.
(g) Any licensee or license applicant has refused to make
available to the State Fire Marshal full, complete, and accurate
The State Fire Marshal may, upon three days notice, suspend
any license for a period not exceeding 30 days pending investigation
of any violation of the provisions of this part.
Any applicant who has been denied a license or renewal of a
license, or any licensee who has had a license suspended, shall be
entitled to a hearing in accordance with the provisions of this part.
Except where otherwise provided in this part, all hearings
under this part shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 5
(commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of
the Government Code.
Reports on fireworks transactions or the payment of license
fees or penalties required by this part shall be deemed to have been
made or paid at the time they are filed with, or paid to, the State
Fire Marshal, or, if sent by mail, on the date shown by the United
States postmark on the envelope containing the report or payment.
Except as otherwise provided in Section 12599, on and after
July 1, 1974, the original and annual license fee shall be for the
fiscal year beginning July 1 and ending June 30 of the following
year, or for the remaining portion of such fiscal year if the license
is issued after the beginning of that fiscal year.
Any person or organization may obtain any license required
by this part between January 1, 1974, and June 30, 1974, to be
effective for that period only.
Application for renewal of a license shall be made during
the license renewal period in the current license year in order to
renew a license for the next following license year. The license
renewal period shall begin on January 1 and end May 1 preceding the
license year for which renewal is requested. A penalty of 50 percent
of the basic license fee shall be assessed in all cases where the
renewal fees are not paid on or before May 1, preceding the license
year for which renewal is requested. This section shall not apply to
retail sales licenses.
Every licensee who fails to renew his or her license by the
time the license expires shall surrender the license to the State
Fire Marshal within 10 days after the license expires.
A retail license shall authorize a retail sale of safe and
sane fireworks within this state only during the period of 12 noon on
the 28th of June through 12 noon on the 6th of July of the same
calendar year and such license shall expire at the end of such
period. No retail license shall be issued for the license period
defined in this section unless the application for such license is
received by the State Fire Marshal on or before June 15 preceding the
license period. A new retail sales license shall be required
annually for the period specified in this section.
Except as provided in Section 12583, the authority to
perform any acts permitted by a license issued under this part shall
be limited to the licensee and shall not be transferable.
Except as provided in Section 12599, any license not renewed
in accordance with the provisions of this part shall automatically
expire at 12 midnight on June 30 of each year.
A license shall not be required for the retail sale, use, or
discharge of agricultural and wildlife fireworks, model rocket
motors, or emergency signaling devices.
No person or employee holding a pyrotechnic license shall be
required to obtain a manufacturer's license to design, assemble,
compound, use, discharge, fabricate, construct, or erect any
fireworks of any class or any combination thereof when such person or
employee of such person is engaged in the business of producing
television, motion picture, theater, or opera productions if the
fireworks are for a specific use in a particular production or are
used to maintain a reasonable inventory of special effects by a
special effects independent contractor.
Following the revocation or voluntary surrender of a
license, or failure to renew his license, any person in lawful
possession of lawfully acquired fireworks for which a license is
required may sell or otherwise dispose of such fireworks only under
supervision of the State Fire Marshal and in such a manner as he
shall provide by regulations and solely to persons who are authorized
to buy, possess, sell, or use such fireworks. Such disposal shall be
accomplished not later than 90 days from the legal revocation,
voluntary surrender, or day that the license expires. Any person
possessing fireworks pursuant to this section shall report the
disposition of such fireworks to the local authority who issued the
storage permit within the time period specified by this section.
Any person found guilty of violating any of the provisions
of this part is not eligible to apply for a new license, apply for a
renewal of a license, or take an examination for any license for a
period of one year from the date of any conviction. The State Fire
Marshal may waive the provisions of this section when he finds the
granting of a license will not endanger public safety.
Any charges against applicants for a license or against
licensees which would be cause for the State Fire Marshal to initiate
proceedings for revocation or denial of a license shall be filed
with the State Fire Marshal within three years of the alleged act or
(a) If the State Fire Marshal or his or her designee
determines that the public interest and public welfare will be
adequately served by permitting a person licensed under this chapter
to pay a monetary penalty to the State Fire Marshal in lieu of an
actual license suspension, the State Fire Marshal or his or her
designee may stay the execution of all or part of the suspension if
all of the following conditions are met:
(1) The violation that is the cause for the suspension did not
pose, or have the potential to pose, a significant threat or risk of
harm to the public.
(2) The licensee pays a monetary penalty.
(3) The licensee does not incur any other cause for disciplinary
action within a period of time specified by the State Fire Marshal or
his or her designee.
In making the determination, the State Fire Marshal or his or her
designee shall consider the seriousness of the violation, the
violator's record of compliance with the law, the impact of the
determination on the licensee, the licensee's employees or customers,
and other relevant factors.
(b) The State Fire Marshal or his or her designee may exercise the
discretion granted under this section either with respect to a
suspension ordered by a decision after a contested hearing on an
accusation against the licensee or by stipulation with the licensee
after the filing of an accusation, but prior to the rendering of a
decision based upon the accusation. In either case, the terms and
conditions of the disciplinary action against the licensee shall be
made part of a formal decision of the State Fire Marshal or his or
(c) If a licensee fails to pay the monetary penalty in accordance
with the terms and conditions of the decision of the State Fire
Marshal or his or her designee, the State Fire Marshal or his or her
designee may, without a hearing, order the immediate execution of all
or any part of the stayed suspension in which event the licensee
shall not be entitled to any repayment nor credit, prorated or
otherwise, for money paid to the State Fire Marshal under the terms
of the decision.
(d) The amount of the monetary penalty payable under this section
shall not exceed two hundred fifty dollars ($250) for each day of
suspension stayed nor a total of ten thousand dollars ($10,000) per
decision regardless of the number of days of suspension stayed under
(e) Any monetary penalty received pursuant to this section shall
be deposited in the State Fire Marshal Licensing and Certification
(f) On or before March 1 of each year, the State Fire Marshal
shall make available to the public data showing the percentage of
enforcement actions taken that resulted in license suspension or the
assessment of monetary penalties pursuant to this section.
The State Fire Marshal may deny the application for a
license or the application for renewal of a license filed by any
person who has been convicted of a felony involving explosives or
dangerous fireworks or who has been convicted as a principal or
accessory in a crime against property involving arson or any other
fire-related offense contained in Chapter 1 (commencing with Section
447a) of Title 13 of Part 1 of the Penal Code.
The authority to perform those acts conferred upon the
employee of a licensee as provided for in Section 12583 may be denied
to any person who has been convicted of a felony.