New law affecting pawnbrokers draws criticism

With unanimous support and the governor’s signature, Senate Bill 1820 became law requiring an account of all goods pawned or purchased by a pawnbroker. The bill also prohibits shops from accepting merchandise with a destroyed serial number and makes them hold purchased merchandise for ten days after entering it into their records.

Most people would agree that pawn shops should keep records and to not accept something that is probably stolen. Hanging on to merchandise for ten days is meant to help police recover stolen items.

But pawnshop record keeping is already state law–so is the serial number provision.

Does a ten-day hold on all merchandise help law enforcement more than it hurts the business owner? Aurora Police Department Interim Chief Paul Nelson took a hands-on approach to their pawn shop ordinance. He says that a hold time on non-numbered merchandise isn’t that useful.

Chief Nelson said Aurora’s ordinance will be effectively gutted when Senator Harmon’s bill is effective January 1.

Illinois News Network


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