Yesterday, Fox 23 reported that Albany County lawmakers voted, despite local opposition, that those dealing in precious metal sales and second-hand dealer sales will have to abide by Local Law G, which dictates that second-hand dealers must glean personal information from sellers. Small business owners opposed the law, claiming that it would hurt small business owners unnecessarily. Below is the full Fox 23 video report.
According to an article that appeared last month on Seacoastonline.com, Exeter, NH, may soon be adopting an ordinance that requires pawn shop owners to “obtain a license through the Board of Selectmen and fill out transaction forms provided by the town whenever they buy an item from an individual.” Owners would also have to obtain copies of each seller’s picture ID. A similar ordinance was implemented successfully in the nearby city of Plaistow.
The article also states that though Exeter doesn’t actually have any pawn shops, there are many second-hand dealers in the area that would be affected by the ordinance. The main goals of the ordinance are to limit stolen property transactions and recover stolen property.
Pawn shop owners and second-hand dealers don’t usually applaud ordinances like the one that may soon be implemented in Exeter. They make for more work and can sometimes cause more problems than they do solutions.
In Madison, WI, a stolen property-related ordinance was recently made easier for pawn shop owners and second-dealers to manage through an online system, according to Channel 3000, the WISC-TV website. Customer information is submitted via a Web-based dashboard that saves police and shop owners paper and time. Apparently, Pawn America is taking on the cost of the online system for the first year. The article did not disclose whether or not the system would cost pawn shop owners down the road.
Brockton, MA, has implemented a system similar to the Madison system. In January of this year, The Enterprise, a daily Brockton newspaper, reported, “Pawn dealers in the Brockton region are now part of a computerized database that local police departments are using to track stolen merchandise and, in some cases, lead to robbery arrests.”
While stolen property-related ordinances have their downsides, there are benefits. When it’s easier for police departments and pawn shops to track stolen goods, some of the hassles associated with handling stolen goods are eliminated or at least made easier to manage.
How do you feel about your state or city’s stolen property-related ordinances? Do they help or hurt your business? Do they have little impact on your operations, or do they tend to slow down or limit broker-seller transactions?