In January of 2004 the Barton County Commission adopted Resolution 2004-5 regarding open burning in Barton County. That Resolution was replaced in January of 2005 by 2005-4 which changed burn permits to life time status rather than 1 year from the date issued. County Commissioners cited through the resolution that there was a problem and that a formal policy could and would help alleviate the problem. The main intent, at least from fire department perspectives, was to have burning permit system so that formal notification would take place. Using K.S.A. 19-101 (Home Rule) as authority the permit system was set up and the resolution was adopted.
The resolution refers to K.A.R. 28-19-645 & 648 which talks about Agriculture open burning stating that the Fire Department shall be contacted prior to burning or in our case, Barton County Communications, who have been extended the authority by the fire departments in Barton County. The regulation also states circumstances such as; burning only during daytime hours, wind speeds in excess of 15 mph, smoke over roadways, etc all effect whether or not a permit is issued. These are all printed on the front of the burn permit that is issued to the patron. K.A.R. 28-19-647 cites exceptions to the prohibition of open burning which would, include bon-fires and/or ceremonial or cooking fires. A special permit would be issued for “ceremonial” or “cooking” fires, etc. by the fire department that has jurisdiction, as long as winds were below 15 mph and there would not be issues with visibility due to smoke and/or there would not be any other dangers present due to exposures. In some areas the fire department may go to the burn site to inspect the burn plan prior to authorizing the permit.
Burning shingles, tires, furniture, household trash, or recyclable materials are unacceptable to burn and will not be approved.
During extreme conditions such as prolonged dry weather a "Burning Ban" may be issued through a Resolution adopted by the County Commission. This "Burn Ban" would be county wide and would include all forms of open burning.
At other times "Burn Restrictions" may be implemented by individual Fire Departments in their respective area due in part to dry conditions in their jurisdiction or lack of personnel or equipment available if the controlled fire becomes out of control. With "Burn Restrictions" the local Fire Department may be contacted for special permission to burn.