NEW YORK STATE - The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is reminding New York State residents that residential brush burning is prohibited from March 16 through May 14 across the state.
The burn ban was put in place to prevent brush fires, which can occur this time of year with the dry conditions and rising temperatures.
The DEC says the burn ban has decreased spring wildfires by 35 percent since 2009.
Open burning of debris is the largest single cause of spring wildfires in New York State, the DEC says.
Violators of the state's open burning regulation are subject to both criminal and civil enforcement actions, with a minimum fine of $500 for a first offense. To report environmental law violations call 1-800-TIPP DEC (1-800-847-7332).
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