January Session, 2013
Senate, March 25, 2013
The Committee on Public Safety and Security reported through SEN. HARTLEY, J. of the 15th Dist., Chairperson of the Committee on the part of the Senate, that the substitute bill ought to pass.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:
Section 1. Section 21-100 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2013):
(a) No person may engage in or carry on the business of purchasing gold or gold-plated ware, silver or silver-plated ware, platinum ware, watches, jewelry, precious stones, bullion or coins unless such person is licensed as a precious metals or stones dealer by the licensing authority of the municipality in which such person intends to carry on such business; except that the provisions of this subsection shall not apply to the purchase of such items from a wholesaler by a manufacturer or retail seller whose primary place of business is located in this state. Such person shall pay an annual fee of ten dollars for such license. The license may be revocable for cause, which shall include, but not be limited to, failure to comply with any requirements for licensure specified by the licensing authority at the time of issuance. The licensing authority shall refuse to issue a license under this subsection to a person who has been convicted of a felony and may require any applicant for a license to submit to state and national criminal history records checks. If the licensing authority requires such criminal history records checks, such checks shall be conducted in accordance with section 29-17a. For the purposes of this subsection "wholesaler" means a person in the business of selling tangible personal property to be resold at retail or raw materials to be manufactured into suitable forms for use by consumers.
(b) Any person who wilfully engages in the business of a precious metals or stones dealer unless licensed in accordance with this section or after notice that such person's license has been suspended or revoked shall be guilty of a class D felony.
[(c) Each such licensee shall keep a record in which such licensee shall note at the time of each transaction a description of the property purchased and the price paid for them, the name and address of the person selling the goods and the date and hour any such property was received. Each such licensee shall demand positive identification from the person selling the article and the type or form of identification received shall be noted in the record.]
(c) No licensee shall purchase gold or gold-plated ware, silver or silver-plated ware, platinum ware, watches, jewelry, precious stones, bullion or coins without receiving proof of the identity of the person selling the property if such person is not a wholesaler. Such identification shall include a photograph, an address, if available on the identification, and an identifying number, including, but not limited to, date of birth.
(d) (1) Each licensee shall maintain a record-keeping system in which shall be entered in English, at the time the licensee purchases any gold or gold-plated ware, silver or silver-plated ware, platinum ware, watches, jewelry or precious stones, a description of such property and the name, the residence address, the proof of identity as required by this section and a general description of the person from whom, and the date and hour when, such property was purchased and in which, if the property does not contain any identifiable numbers or markings, shall be included a digital photograph of such property. Except as provided in subsection (f) of this section, the description of any such property purchased by a licensee under this section shall include, but not be limited to, all distinguishing marks, names of any kind, including brand and model names, model and serial numbers, engravings, etchings, affiliation with any institution or organization, dates, initials, color, vintage or image represented.
(2) Any licensee who purchases bullion or coins shall, at the time of such purchase, enter in such record-keeping system in English a description of the bullion or coins purchased and the name, the residence address, the proof of identity as required by this section and a general description of the person from whom, and the date and hour when, such bullion or coins were purchased.
(3) Each entry in such record-keeping system shall be numbered consecutively. Such number shall be visible in any digital photograph required under subdivision (1) of this subsection and shall be retained with the property purchased or received until the sale or other disposition of such property.
(e) Any state police officer or municipal police officer shall have access to [the] any record required to be kept under this section and may inspect the place where the business is carried on as well as any [goods] property purchased or received. Any state police officer or municipal police officer who performs such an examination may require any employee on the premises to provide proof of such employee's identity. All records maintained pursuant to this section shall be retained by the licensee for not less than two years. The licensee shall maintain a place of business within this state, at which the [goods] property purchased or received and the required records shall be available for such inspection.
(f) The licensing authority may provide for an exemption from the requirements of subsections (d) and (e) of this section, or establish additional or different requirements concerning the description of any property purchased by a licensee, upon consideration of the nature of the property, transaction or business, including, but not limited to, articles in bulk lots or articles of minimal value.
[(d)] (g) No licensee may purchase any property from a minor unless such minor is accompanied by a parent or guardian.
[(e)] (h) Each such licensee may only pay for property received by check or money order and no cash shall be transferred to either party in the course of a transaction subject to the provisions of this section. The licensee shall retain the electronic copy of such check or other record issued by the financial institution that processed such check, and such copy or record shall be subject to inspection in accordance with this section as part of the record-keeping system. The licensee shall indicate on each such instrument the number or numbers associated with such property in the record-keeping system required to be maintained pursuant to this section. Any licensee who pays cash or cashes a check or money order shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor. No licensee may advertise that he or she will pay for property received with cash.
[(f)] (i) Any precious metals or stones dealer who was licensed in any city or town as a pawnbroker pursuant to section 21-40 on March 31, 2011, and who continues to hold such license, may pay for property received pursuant to a precious metals or stones dealer license issued in accordance with this section in the manner authorized under section 21-42 until July 1, 2021, provided such precious metals or stones dealer complies with all other provisions of this section relating to precious metals or stones dealers.
[(g)] (j) At the time of making any purchase each licensee shall deliver to the person selling property a receipt containing the information required to be recorded in subsection [(c)] (d) of this section, the amount paid for any property sold and the name and address of the purchaser.
[(h) Upon request of the licensing authority each such licensee shall make a weekly sworn statement, describing the goods received and setting forth the name and address of each person from whom goods were purchased, to the licensing authority of each municipality in which the licensee transacted business that week. Such sworn statement shall not be deemed a public record for the purposes of the Freedom of Information Act, as defined in section 1-200.]
(k) Each licensee shall submit to the licensing authority, on a weekly basis or more frequently at the option of the licensee, a sworn statement of his or her transactions, describing the property purchased and setting forth the nature and terms of the transaction and the name and residence address and a description of the person from whom the property was purchased. Such statement shall be in an electronic format prescribed by the licensing authority. The licensing authority may grant exemptions from the requirement of submitting such statements in an electronic format for good cause shown. Such sworn statement shall not be deemed a public record for the purposes of the Freedom of Information Act, as defined in section 1-200.
(l) No licensee shall sell or dispose of any property, other than bullion or coins, acquired in any transaction in the course of business in less than ten days after the date of the submission of the statement concerning such transaction in accordance with subsection (k) of this section. Upon the sale or disposition of any property, such licensee shall, if such property is not sold at retail at the place of business of such licensee, include a record of such sale or disposition in the record-keeping system required by this section.
(m) Whenever property is seized from the place of business of a precious metals or stones dealer by a law enforcement officer, the officer shall give the dealer a duly signed receipt for the property containing a case number, a description of the property, the reason for the seizure, the name and address of the officer, the name and address of the person claiming a right to the property prior to the dealer and the name of the dealer. If the dealer claims an ownership interest in such property, the dealer may request the return of such property by filing a request for such property with the law enforcement agency in accordance with the provisions of section 54-36a. If the seller of any property purchased by the dealer is convicted of any offense arising out of the dealer's acquisition of the property and the dealer suffered an economic loss as a result of such offense, the court may, at the time of sentencing, order restitution to the dealer pursuant to subsection (c) of section 53a-28, which order may be enforced in accordance with section 53a-28a.
[(i)] (n) Any person who violates any provision of this section, for which no other penalty is provided, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars.
Sec. 2. Section 21-46a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2013):
Whenever property is seized from the place of business of a pawnbroker [or precious metals or stones dealer] by a law enforcement officer, such officer shall give the pawnbroker [or precious metals or stones dealer] a duly signed receipt for the property containing a case number, a description of the property, the reason for the seizure, the name and address of the officer, the name and address of the person claiming a right to the property prior to the pawnbroker [or precious metals or stones dealer] and the name of the pawnbroker. [or precious metals or stones dealer.] If the pawnbroker [or precious metals or stones dealer] claims an ownership interest in such property, he or she may request the return of such property by filing a request for such property with the law enforcement agency in accordance with the provisions of section 54-36a. If the person who deposited, pledged or sold any property received by a pawnbroker [or dealer] is convicted of any offense arising out of such pawnbroker's [or dealer's] acquisition, retention or disposition of the property and such pawnbroker [or dealer] suffered an economic loss as a result of such offense, the court, at the time of sentencing, may order restitution to such pawnbroker [or dealer] pursuant to subsection (c) of section 53a-28 and such order may be enforced in accordance with section 53a-28a.
This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:
October 1, 2013
October 1, 2013
Statement of Legislative Commissioners:
Section 1 was reorganized to ensure clarity and conciseness.
Joint Favorable Subst.
The following Fiscal Impact Statement and Bill Analysis are prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and do not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.
OFA Fiscal Note
FY 14 $
FY 15 $
Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection
GF - Potential Revenue Gain
Less than $10,000
Less than $10,000
The bill, which makes changes to the information that precious metals and stones dealers must collect and retain, is expected to result in a potential revenue gain of less than $10,000 arising from a $1,000 fine for violations of the new requirements. The revenue gain from fines is expected to be less than $10,000 as violations of similar regulations for pawn brokers have generated less than $1,000 in revenue since 2001.
The Out Years
OLR Bill Analysis
This bill requires licensed precious metals or stones dealers (dealers) to record and retain additional information about property acquired from people other than wholesalers.
By law, dealers are (1) people primarily engaged in the business of purchasing gold or gold-plated ware, silver or silver-plated ware, platinum ware, watches, jewelry, precious stones, bullion, or coins and (2) licensed by the police chief, or for any city or town that does not have an organized local police department, the emergency services and public protection commissioner.
The new requirements primarily concern (1) property acquisition records and (2) information dealers must periodically supply to the licensing authorities. The bill exempts bullion and coin sales from certain new recording and retention requirements required for other property.
The bill also (1) allows police officers examining records on-site to require employees to provide identification and (2) establishes a two-year record retention period. By law, police officers may already examine records on-site.
Those violating the new requirements are subject to fines of up to $1,000 and existing licensing penalties (i.e., license revocation).
The bill also makes technical and conforming changes.
EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2013
Under current law, a dealer is required to demand “positive identification” from anyone selling property. The bill instead requires the identification to include a photograph; an address, if available on the identification; and an identifying number, including date of birth.
Under current law, dealers are required to keep records noting the time of each transaction, with a description of the (1) purchased property and the price paid, (2) name and address of the person selling the goods, and (3) date and hour the property was purchased. Dealers must note the type or form of identification in the record.
Precious Metals and Stones
The bill expands the record-keeping requirements for selling gold or gold-plated ware, silver or silver-plated ware, platinum ware, watches, jewelry, or precious stones. It requires dealers to maintain a consecutively numbered record-keeping system with entries recorded in English at the time of purchase. In addition to the information described above, records in the system must contain a (1) general description of the seller, along with proof of identity and (2) digital photograph of any item without identifiable numbers or markings. The bill specifies that the address dealers record must be the seller's home address and requires them to keep the records for at least two years.
Property Description. Under the bill, the record's property description must include:
1. all distinguishing marks, engravings, and etchings;
2. names of any kind, including brand and model;
3. model and serial numbers;
4. affiliation with any institution or organization;
8. vintage; and
9. image represented.
Digital Photographs. The bill requires a digital photograph of property that does not have any identifiable numbers or markings. A number corresponding to the number assigned to the property's entry in the record-keeping system must be visible in the photograph and remain attached to the property until its disposition or sale.
Bullion and Coins
For bullion and coin sales, in addition to the requirements under current law, the bill requires dealers to keep the record in English, be consecutively numbered, and include the seller's general description.
The licensing authority may exempt dealers from any record-keeping or police officers from any inspection requirement or establish additional or different description requirements depending on the nature of the property, transaction, or business, including articles sold in bulk lots or with minimal value. It is unclear how the licensing authority will exempt police officer inspections or identification checks.
By law, dealers may pay for acquired property only by check or money order. The bill requires dealers who pay by check to retain its electronic copy or other record issued by the financial institution that processes it. The copy is subject to inspection as part of the dealer's record-keeping system, and presumably includes the record-keeping applicable to bullion and coin sales. Dealers must indicate the number or numbers associated with the property in the record-keeping system on the checks or money orders.
Existing law bars dealers from paying sellers in cash or cashing checks or money orders. A violation is a class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to a $2,000 fine, up to one year's imprisonment, or both.
By law, at the time of purchase, a dealer must provide the seller a receipt containing the required record-keeping information, amount paid for any property sold, and the purchaser's name and address. The bill requires the receipt to include the new information dealers must enter into their own records.
Under current law, at the request of the licensing authority, dealers must submit weekly sworn reports describing the property purchased, including the seller's name and address. The bill makes this reporting requirement mandatory, and gives dealers the option to submit them more often. It requires reports to also include a description of the person from whom the property was purchased and the nature and terms of each transaction. The bill allows the licensing authority to (1) prescribe the report's electronic format and (2) grant exemptions for good cause. As under current law, the sworn statements are not public records for Freedom of Information Act purposes.
SALE OF PROPERTY
The bill prohibits dealers from selling or disposing of property, other than bullion or coins, acquired in any transaction within 10 days after submitting their report to the licensing authority. If any property is sold outside the retail premises, the dealer must, upon sale or disposition, record it in the record-keeping system.
Public Safety and Security Committee
Joint Favorable Substitute