With sporadic showers almost daily over the past week open burn bans are gradually being lifted throughout Middle Tennessee.
Tuesday morning the City of Murfreesboro lifted its ban that had been in effect since late June.
One of those cited appeared in Rutherford County General Sessions Tuesday morning.
James Hodge pleaded guilty to reckless burning and agreed to a $50 dollar fine, plus more than $300 in court costs and a year of unsupervised probation for an open burn at his home east of Murfreesboro.
He could have received up to a year in jail and up to a $2,500 fine in new maximum penalties passed last month in Rutherford County.
“It was just a real small fire here and they come running up screaming like we were criminals,” Hodge recalled. “I guess they thought we pouring gasoline on it.”
The lifting of the ban means resident Mischa Nemeth can now burn a huge pile of limbs and branches outside his home on Barfield Road.
“Its how get rid of things out here in the country,” he told Nashville's News 2 while working around his home Tuesday. “And we can roast marshmallows once again as wood pile burns,” he added.
The Rutherford County Fire Department reports 10 to 12 citations were issued during the ban from late June until last week.