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Pawn Shop Ordinance Approved in Springfield


SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) – The Springfield city council approved  a pawnshop ordinance Monday night that would require pawnshops to hold items for 30 days after they receive them, instead of ten.

It’s a great place to go if you need a little extra cash and have something you wouldn’t mind selling. But Pawn Shop owners debated the city council in Springfield over regulations aimed at helping to solve crimes.

Those supporting the ordinance think it’s going to crack down on crime.

“That doesn’t give police ample amount of time to do their investigations and give the people of the city ample or reasonable opportunity to recover those items. So this ordinance, this change reflects the need to do that,” says Tom Ashe, Springfield City Councilor.

But Pawn Shops say they rarely see merchandise that’s been stolen. If the ordinance is passed, they’ll need to hold on to merchandise for 30 days instead of 10. They will also provide more detailed records to police including photos of the customers in addition to the copy of their license they already take.

“For the added amount of labor, the risk involved in holding onto merchandise for 30 days, we’ll have to pay less to the public for their items,” Euclide Desrochers, owner of The Gold and Coin Exchange explained to us.

Pawn shops like the gold and coin exchange aren’t just worried about their own business, they’re worried about their customers as well.

“It’s embarrassing for me, it’s embarrassing to the customer, it’s like treating everyone like a criminal,” said Desrochers.

While other shops may agree that strides can be taken to improve the regulations on pawn shops, they say this ordinance is not the way to do it.

David Rosen of Gold Trader sent us a statement that read in part, “We respectfully submit that whereas parts of the proposed ordinance make strides in the right direction, it is generally sweeping in its approach and falls short of exhibiting a comprehensive understanding of the issues at hand and the businesses it will regulate.”

“One of the criticisms that we’ve received is that it’s an invasion of privacy, what we’ve come to find out during this process is that it isn’t an invasion of privacy. That only the members of the police department that are designated to do so can have access to these,” Ashe explained.



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