Village of Great Neck Plaza, NY
Nassau County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Great Neck Plaza 5-20-1981 as L.L. No. 5-1981. Amendments noted where applicable.]

§ 171-1 Findings; policy.

A. 
The Board of Trustees of the Village of Great Neck Plaza finds that the business of buying and selling secondhand merchandise is rapidly expanding in the Village of Great Neck Plaza. In the past these business operations were conducted without regulation by the village. This situation creates an ideal scenario for persons to dispose of stolen property and thus is destructive of the property rights of our citizens, and it impedes the police agencies of the county in their attempt to stem the tide of larcenies and burglaries. Therefore, the Village Board concludes that it is in the best interests of the welfare of the village's citizens to enact a law regulating the operations of dealers in secondhand merchandise who conduct their business in the incorporated area of the Village of Great Neck Plaza.
B. 
It is hereafter the policy of the Village of Great Neck Plaza that dealers in secondhand merchandise who conduct their business in the incorporated area of the village be subject to regulation and licensing by the Town of North Hempstead and that they keep records of all their transactions so as to ensure that their businesses are not used to dispose of stolen property.

§ 171-2 Definitions.

As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ANTIQUE
Any article or merchandise which is more than 50 years old.
APPROPRIATE POLICE AGENCY
The Nassau County Police Department.
DEALER IN SECONDHAND MERCHANDISE
Any person who, in any way as principal broker or agent:
A. 
Deals in the commercial purchase or sale of secondhand merchandise or coins for any purpose;
B. 
Accepts or receives secondhand merchandise as returns of merchandise or in exchange for or for credit against the price of any other articles or merchandise; or
C. 
Deals in the commercial purchase or sale of pawnbroker tickets or other evidence of pledged articles.
PERSON
An individual, partnership, unincorporated association, corporation or other entity.
SECONDHAND MERCHANDISE
Any item which shall have been previously used or purchased by a consumer but shall not include:
A. 
Automobiles, pianos, books, magazines, rugs, tapestries, artists' burlaps, paintings, sculpture, drawings, etchings and engravings.
B. 
The first purchase or sale in the United States of any imported used item.
C. 
The acceptance or receipt of merchandise in a new or used condition as a return or exchange or for credit or refund if such merchandise was originally purchased as new merchandise from the person accepting or receiving the same, or any resale of such merchandise as new merchandise, or the first subsequent non-retail sale or exchange of such merchandise as used merchandise.
D. 
The first sale, at retail, of merchandise which has been rebuilt by the manufacturer or vendor originally manufacturing it, or the licensed agents thereof, and sold as factory-rebuilt merchandise.
E. 
Articles sold or acquired by a thrift shop, as defined to be so classified under the United States Internal Revenue Code and entitled to an exemption as an eleemosynary corporation or institution.
F. 
Antiques having a value of less than $250 and void of any serial numbers, monograms, initials or distinct markings.
G. 
Articles brought or sold by a junk dealer pursuant to Ordinance No. 36 of the Village of Great Neck Plaza.

§ 171-3 License required.

It shall be unlawful for any person to act as a dealer in secondhand merchandise within the incorporated areas of the Village of Great Neck Plaza without first having obtained, and having then in force, a license therefor as hereinafter provided.

§ 171-4 License application.

Every person who desires to act as a dealer in secondhand merchandise within the incorporated areas of the Village of Great Neck Plaza shall file with the Town Clerk of the Town of North Hempstead (hereafter referred to as "Town Clerk") a written application upon forms to be furnished by the village, verified under oath, stating:
A. 
The name and a description of the applicant, and if the person is:
(1) 
An individual operating under a trade name, he must present a certified copy of the trade name or comparable certificate filed in the office of the Nassau County Clerk.
(2) 
A partnership conducting business, whether or not under a trade name, he must present a certified copy of the partnership certificate filed in the office of the Nassau County Clerk.
(3) 
A domestic corporation, it must furnish a photostatic copy of the filing receipt for the certificate of incorporation given by the New York State Secretary of State.
(4) 
A foreign corporation, it must furnish a photostatic copy of its application for authority to do business in New York State which was submitted to the New York State Secretary of State.
B. 
The address of the principal and local offices of the applicant.
C. 
That the applicant, if an individual, is at least 18 years of age.
D. 
That the applicant, if an individual, is a citizen of the United States and whether citizenship was obtained by birth or naturalization. If by naturalization, the date and court where obtained must be included in the information, together with a copy of the naturalization certificate or a permanent Board of Elections personal registration card.
E. 
Whether or not the applicant has ever been convicted of any crime, misdemeanor or violation other than parking offenses. The statement should include:
(1) 
The nature of the offense and punishment or penalty assessed thereof.
(2) 
Any other facts or evidence deemed necessary by the Village Clerk to establish that the applicant is a person fit and capable of properly conducting the activity or business for which the license is sought.
F. 
A description of the exact type of business operation which the applicant proposes to conduct.
G. 
The name and address of the owner or owners of the land where such business or activity will be conducted, together with the nature of the right of occupancy held by the applicant for the use of such land, and that the applicable zoning of the land permits the type of business proposed by the applicant.
H. 
Photographs and fingerprints.
(1) 
At the discretion of the Town Clerk:
(a) 
Two photographs and a set of fingerprints of any individual applicant;
(b) 
Two photographs and a set of fingerprints of each partner where the applicant is a partnership; or
(c) 
A set of fingerprints of all officers, and stockholders of at least 10% of the stock, where the applicant is a corporation.
(2) 
Any photograph required of the applicant shall be taken not more than 60 days prior to the date of the application and be two by two (2 x 2) inches, showing the head and shoulders of the applicant in a clear and distinguishing manner.
I. 
If the applicant is a corporation, it is to supply the name, New York address and the title of the officer of the corporation upon whom process or legal notice may be served.
J. 
Whether the applicant seeks a general, management or exposition license as hereinafter defined.

§ 171-5 License classification.

A. 
A general license shall authorize the licensee to act as a dealer with respect to all secondhand merchandise within the incorporated areas of the Village of Great Neck Plaza during the license term specified in § 171-6 of this chapter.
B. 
A management license shall authorize a licensee who is not a regular dealer in antiques to operate and manage an antiques exposition where such antiques are sold at any fair, show, exhibit or any place within the incorporated areas of the Village of Great Neck Plaza during the license term specified by § 171-6 of this chapter.
C. 
An exposition license shall authorize a dealer in antiques who maintains no place of business within the incorporated areas of the Village of Great Neck Plaza to exhibit and sell such articles at any fair, show or exposition within the incorporated areas of the Village of Great Neck Plaza during the license term specified by § 171-6 of this chapter.

§ 171-6 Duration of license.

A. 
Every general license issued hereunder shall expire on the 30th day of April next succeeding the date of its issuance unless sooner revoked by the Town Clerk as hereinafter provided.
B. 
Every management or exposition license issued hereunder shall expire 30 days after its issuance unless sooner revoked by the Town Clerk as hereinafter provided.

§ 171-7 Police investigation.

The Town Clerk shall keep any fingerprints, submitted by the applicant pursuant to § 171-4 of this chapter, on file in his office and may make any necessary investigation of the applicant's criminal record by using such fingerprints or otherwise. The cost of such investigation shall be paid by the applicant with a check made payable to the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services or as otherwise specified by the Town Clerk. Failure by the applicant to submit such a check when required to do so by the Town Clerk shall constitute grounds for the denial of the application.

§ 171-8 Additional information.

The Town Clerk may, in his discretion, before the issuance of a license, require the applicant and any others having knowledge of the facts to submit to an examination under oath and to produce evidence relating thereto, or hold a hearing upon such application as hereinafter provided.

§ 171-9 License issuance.

A. 
Upon receipt of the license application, completion of any investigation conducted pursuant to § 171-7, payment of the prescribed fees and posting of the required bonds by the applicant, the Town Clerk shall grant, either with or without conditions, or deny the license.
B. 
The Town Clerk shall keep a record of all licenses issued, as well as any other matters herein described.
C. 
If a license is granted by the Town Clerk, he shall prepare and deliver the same to the licensee. The license issued by the Town Clerk shall state the name and address of the licensee, the date of its issuance, the classification of the license issued, pursuant to the provisions of § 171-5 of this chapter, and the expiration date of the license.
D. 
No license shall be granted under this section to any dealer in secondhand merchandise:
(1) 
Who has been convicted of any offense which, under the laws of the State of New York, constitutes a crime involving larceny, fraud or sale or possession of stolen property;
(2) 
Who has been found by any court of the state to have practiced any fraud, deceit or misrepresentation in the conduct of a secondhand-dealer business unless the Town Clerk, after approval by the Town Board of the Town of North Hempstead (hereinafter referred to as "Town Board"), shall decide in any particular case upon the facts there presented that it is proper to issue the license applied for;
(3) 
Whose license under this chapter has been revoked at any time during the year prior to the time of the application for the license; or
(4) 
Whose license has been suspended under this chapter and the period of such suspension has not expired at the time of this application for the license.

§ 171-10 Bond and fees.

A. 
General license. A person securing a general license shall be required to:
(1) 
Furnish a bond to the Town of North Hempstead in the sum of $2,000, conditioned upon the due observance of the provisions of this chapter, and file such bond with the Town Clerk; and
(2) 
Pay an annual license fee of $100. to the Town Clerk.
B. 
Management license. A person securing a management license shall be required to:
(1) 
Furnish a bond to the Town of North Hempstead in the sum of $10,000, conditioned upon the due observance of the provisions of this chapter by the licensee and any exhibitors at the exposition which the licensee is managing, and file such bond with the Town Clerk; and
(2) 
Pay the license fee of $100 to the Town Clerk.
C. 
Exposition license. A person securing an exposition license shall be required to pay a fee of $50 to the Town Clerk.

§ 171-11 License renewal.

A. 
Any general license issued by the Town Clerk may be renewed annually, for additional periods of one year each from the date of expiration, upon the filing, at least 30 days prior to the expiration date of the current license, of an application containing all the information required by the provisions of this chapter for original applications and the payment of the annual license fee.
B. 
A management or exposition license may be renewed, for no more than two additional thirty-day periods each, upon the filing of an application containing all the information required by this chapter for original applications and the payment of the applicable license fee.

§ 171-12 Nontransferability.

A license granted pursuant to this chapter may not be transferred by the licensee to any other person.

§ 171-13 Causes for suspension or revocation.

A. 
Any license issued hereunder may be suspended or revoked, for a period to be determined by the Town Clerk, if he finds that:
(1) 
The licensee made any misrepresentation or false statement in his application for the license.
(2) 
The licensee has violated any of the provisions of this chapter.
(3) 
The licensee has been convicted of any crime involving larceny, fraud or possession or sale of stolen property.
(4) 
The licensee is conducting the activity as a dealer in secondhand merchandise in an unlawful manner or in such a manner as to constitute a breach of the peace or a menace to the health, safety or general welfare of the public.
B. 
Except as provided in Subsection C of this section, a license hereunder shall not be suspended or revoked by the Town Clerk without a hearing having been held thereupon not less than two business days after written notice thereof shall have been given to the licensee, either in person or by registered or certified mail.
C. 
The Town Clerk, upon receiving information giving him reasonable cause to believe that the holder of any license issued hereunder has committed any acts specified by Subsection A(1), (2) or (3), may temporarily suspend forthwith such license until such time as a hearing is held by the Town Clerk as provided in Subsection B and the Town Clerk shall have rendered his determination thereon.

§ 171-14 Application for review.

Any applicant who has been denied a license or who shall have been granted a license with conditions under this chapter by the Town Clerk or whose license has been suspended or revoked by the Town Clerk may apply to the Town Board for a review of the action by the Town Clerk as hereinafter provided:
A. 
The application to review the Town Clerk's determination shall be in writing, signed and verified by the applicant and shall state his reasons for claiming that the Town Clerk's determination was erroneous.
B. 
The application for such review must be filed with the Town Clerk by mail or in person within 20 days of the receipt by the applicant of the determination by the Town Clerk.
C. 
Before any hearing shall be held by the Town Board, the Town Clerk shall certify to the Town Board that the application for review is complete and meets the requirements of this section. Once such certification is made by the Town Clerk, the Town Board shall hold a hearing thereon as hereinafter set forth.

§ 171-15 Hearing by Town Board.

A. 
Upon receipt of a certification of an application for review issued by the Town Clerk pursuant to § 171-14C of this chapter, the Town Board shall hold a hearing on a date and at a place and hour designated by the Town Board, but in no event shall this date exceed the later of:
(1) 
Thirty days from the date of the Town Clerk's certification of the application for review; or
(2) 
The second regularly scheduled Town Board meeting held after certification of the application.
B. 
The Town Clerk shall give notice thereof, stating the name and address of the applicant or licensee concerned, the subject matter of the hearing and the date, place and hour designated therefor, by mailing a copy thereof to the applicant or licensee concerned at the address shown upon the most recent application of such applicant or licensee at least 10 days before such hearing.
C. 
At such hearing, the Town Board shall consider the application before it in relation to the Town Clerk's determination, and, in its discretion, the Town Board may receive new or additional evidence in support or in opposition to the determination under review.

§ 171-16 Display of license.

A licensee shall place the license at all times in a conspicuous location at the licensee's place of activity or business for which the license was issued so that all persons visiting such place may readily see the same.

§ 171-17 Records of purchase and sale.

A. 
Every dealer in secondhand merchandise shall keep a bound book of consecutively numbered transactions, in a form prescribed by the appropriate police agency, in which shall be legibly written in English, at the time of every purchase or sale to or from a person other than another licensed dealer in secondhand merchandise, the following:
(1) 
A description of every article of secondhand merchandise purchased or sold.
(2) 
Any serial number or numbers and any monograms, inscriptions or other marks or identification that may appear on such article.
(3) 
A description of the articles or pieces comprising old gold, silver, platinum, other metals or coins, stamps or currency and any monogram, inscription or marks of identification thereon.
(4) 
The name, residence address and signature of the person from whom such purchase was made or to whom the merchandise was sold and the day and hour of the purchase or sale and the nature of the identifying document exhibited.
B. 
Every dealer in secondhand merchandise who receives secondhand merchandise on consignment shall keep a record in the above-described book, describing the merchandise and the name and description of the person or dealer who consigned such merchandise.
C. 
Transactions between dealers in secondhand merchandise shall also be recorded in the above-described book in the same manner as heretofore described.
D. 
The above-described book shall be kept on the business premises of the licensee or at the place designated on the license at all times during normal business hours. Such book shall be open to the inspection by:
(1) 
Any police officer of the appropriate police agency;
(2) 
The chief administrative officer of the appropriate police agency or a person duly authorized in writing by such appropriate police agency to inspect such book; or
(3) 
Any inspector of licenses duly appointed by the Town Clerk.
E. 
Every dealer in secondhand merchandise who purchases antiques in bulk shall keep a record of such purchases in the above-described book, and all identifiable antiques which are part of the bulk purchase shall be reported individually to the appropriate police agency within 72 hours after such bulk purchase.

§ 171-18 Reports to the appropriate police agency.

Every dealer in secondhand merchandise shall furnish to the appropriate police agency at the end of each business day all information requested by the police agency relative to all records required to be kept under this chapter. Such information shall be furnished on forms to be designated and supplied by the appropriate police agency.

§ 171-19 Lost or stolen property.

A. 
Notification.
(1) 
If any secondhand merchandise shall be advertised in any newspaper of general circulation within the County of Nassau as having been lost or stolen and any merchandise answering such advertised description, or any part thereof, shall be in or come into the possession of any dealer in secondhand merchandise, such dealer shall immediately give information relating thereto to the appropriate police agency once he receives actual written or oral notice of the similarity of description.
(2) 
Once such notification is given by the dealer to the appropriate police agency, no disposition of such secondhand merchandise shall be made by the dealer until authorization to do so shall have been given to the dealer by the appropriate police agency in writing.
(3) 
A dealer in secondhand merchandise, when notified by the appropriate police agency that property in the dealer's possession is stolen or alleged to be stolen, shall take immediate steps to secure that property, and it shall be marked "police stop." Thereafter, such property shall not be sold or removed from the premises until notification is made in writing to the dealer by the appropriate agency allowing such removal or sale.
B. 
Every dealer in secondhand merchandise who shall have or receive any secondhand merchandise alleged or supposed to have been lost or stolen shall exhibit the same upon demand to:
(1) 
The appropriate police agency; or
(2) 
To any inspector of licenses duly authorized by the Town Clerk to make such inspection.

§ 171-20 Identity of person from whom purchase is made.

A. 
It shall be the duty of every dealer in secondhand merchandise to verify the identify of every person from whom he purchases secondhand merchandise and to make and keep a written record of the nature of the evidence submitted by such person to prove his identity.
B. 
Only the following shall be deemed acceptable evidence of identity:
(1) 
Any official document, except a social security account number card, issued by the United States Government, any state, county, municipality or subdivision thereof, any public agency or department thereof or any public or private employer, which requires and bears the signature of the person to whom it is issued; or
(2) 
Other identification documentation which, under the circumstances of any particular purchase, would lead a reasonable person to believe that such identification is accurate and reliable, when identification under Subsection B(1) hereof is not available.
C. 
It shall be the duty of every dealer in secondhand merchandise to require that every person from whom secondhand merchandise is purchased sign his name in the presence of the dealer, and the dealer shall compare the signature with the signature on the identifying document, if any, and retain on his premises the seller's signature, together with the number and description of the identifying document.

§ 171-21 Signs and labels.

Every dealer in secondhand merchandise who also sells new merchandise within the licensed premises shall label all secondhand merchandise in such manner that the public will be informed of the nature of such merchandise.

§ 171-22 Restrictions.

It shall be unlawful for any dealer in secondhand merchandise to:
A. 
Engage in selling activities at any place other than the place of business designated in such license.
B. 
Purchase any secondhand merchandise from any person he knows to be or has reason to believe is under the age of 18 years old.
C. 
Purchase any secondhand merchandise from any person between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.
D. 
Sell or dispose of any secondhand merchandise until the expiration of 15 business days after the acquisition by such dealer of such merchandise.
E. 
Be licensed as a pawnbroker or to engage in the business of a pawnbroker; nor shall any sign or emblem be displayed by any such dealer, in or about the premises where such business is conducted, which in any way resembles the sign or emblem commonly used by pawnbrokers or which is intended to give the appearance that the business conducted on such premises is, or is connected with, the business of a pawnbroker.
F. 
Deal in the purchase or sale of any items enumerated in § 31-2 of the Code of the Town of North Hempstead, or employ or use a boat, cart or other vehicle for the purpose of collecting any such things or materials, unless he is also licensed as a junk dealer pursuance to Chapter 31 of the Code of the Town of North Hempstead.

§ 171-23 Burden of proof.

The burden of proof that an article was originally purchased from the person accepting or receiving it, that it was the first subsequent sale or exchange thereof to a person other than an ultimate consumer or that it was a first sale at retail of such factory-rebuilt merchandise shall be upon the person asserting the same. Evidence of an existing trade practice in the Village of Great Neck Plaza, if any, shall be admissible for the purpose of determining whether or not merchandise is in new or used condition.

§ 171-24 Disclaimer of liability.

This chapter shall not create any liability on the part of the Village of Great Neck Plaza or the Town of North Hempstead, its officers, agents or employees or the officers, agents and employees of the appropriate police agency for any act or damage caused as a result of reliance on this chapter or any administrative decision lawfully made thereunder.

§ 171-25 Duty of police to enforce.

It shall be the duty of any police officer of the appropriate police agency to require any person seen dealing in secondhand merchandise, and who is not known by such police officer to be duly licensed, to produce or display his dealer's license and to enforce the provisions of this chapter against any person found to be violating the same.

§ 171-26 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Any person who violates the provisions of § 171-3 of this chapter shall be guilty of a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not exceeding $1,000 or by imprisonment for a period not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
B. 
Any person who violates the provisions of any other section of this chapter shall be guilty of a violation, punishable by a fine not exceeding $250 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 15 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment. Each day's violation shall constitute a separate and distinct offense against this chapter.
C. 
In addition to the penalties provided above, any offense against the provisions of this chapter shall subject the person committing the offense to a civil penalty in the amount of $1,000 for each day that the offense shall continue, collectible by and in the name of the Town of North Hempstead.
D. 
A conviction against a licensed dealer for any offense against the provisions of this chapter shall constitute and effect an immediate forfeiture of his license.