When the issue of fireworks funding comes up, Craig City Council members are torn between wanting to support an event enjoyed by residents and watching money "go up in smoke."
Each year, counselors debate whether constituents would rather the Council spend money on the here and now or something more permanent.
Opinions weren't as diverse as they have been in years past and most Council members were in favor of the funding, but at what level brought debate.
"I think the fireworks display is worth a lot of money," Councilor Tom Gilchrist said. "I think the Fourth of July is one of the most important holidays of the year and I think not spending the money is cheesey."
Last year the city donated $3,000, the county gave, $3,500 and the fire district gave $2,000 for an $8,500 display.
In the face of possible fireworks funding cutbacks, the community rallied and donated more than $1,000. Since funding came through at levels necessary for a good display, the public donations were set aside for a possible millennium display on New Year's Eve.
This year, the Council budgeted $3,000 for the display. In order to encourage community participation again, the Council offered to match community donations dollar-for-dollar up to an additional $1,000. That makes a possible $5,000 contribution from the city alone.
The same request to match donations will be made to the Moffat County Board of Commissioners.
Residents who want to donate must do it before the end of February because the fire department must order the fireworks early.o