Town of Salem, NH
Rockingham County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Meeting of the Town of Salem 3-14-1994; last amended 2-25-2013, effective 4-1-2013 (Ch. 251 of the 1995 Code). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter has been enacted pursuant to the authority granted the Town by RSA 322 and RSA 398.
The intent of this chapter is to establish a system which fairly and impartially regulates retail transactions of a pawn or secondhand nature for the purpose of:
A. 
Identifying stolen property unintentionally received by the regulated parties; and
B. 
Detection of regulated parties intentionally transacting business in stolen property.
A. 
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
PAWNBROKER
Any transaction wherein there is the lending of money secured by taking possession of jewelry, wearing apparel, household goods or other personal property, with interest charged thereon, shall be regulated according to RSA 398.
SECONDHAND DEALER
Any person, firm, partnership or corporation whose business is the retail buying, selling, buyback, exchanging, dealing in or dealing with secondhand articles, including but not limited to jewelry, watches, diamonds or other precious stones or gems, gold, silver, platinum, or other precious metals, musical instruments and equipment, cameras, furs, small collectible antiques, home and auto stereo equipment, televisions, VCRs, tools, computers and computer equipment, firearms, auto accessories and collectibles.
B. 
Mail order transactions or retail stores that exchange or provide cash or credit for returned articles shall not be included within these definitions.
A. 
No person, firm, partnership, or corporation shall operate, conduct, or engage in business as a secondhand dealer/pawnbroker unless such person, firm, partnership, or corporation shall first obtain a license from the Board of Selectmen or its designee, i.e., the Chief of Police.
B. 
Applications for new licenses and renewal licenses for a secondhand dealer/pawnbroker shall be made in writing to the Police Department on forms provided for this purpose by the Town of Salem. Each issued license and applicable licensing requirements shall be issued on a location-specific basis. Refusal of a license shall be based on just cause.
C. 
Upon approval, a license shall be issued and continue in force until April 1 next following, unless sooner revoked. Said license may not be assigned or transferred and will be clearly and prominently displayed. Licensing fees, as adopted by the Board of Selectmen, are on file with the Police Department and on the Town of Salem website.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
No secondhand dealer/pawnbroker, nor any person employed by a secondhand dealer/pawnbroker, shall directly or indirectly purchase any aforementioned article from anyone under 18 years old, knowing or having reason to believe him or her to be such, except when said minor is accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, who shall sign the transaction record in person before said dealer.
A. 
Every secondhand dealer/pawnbroker, upon the acquisition of any aforementioned article, shall electronically report all transaction records through an electronic reporting system determined and approved by the Town, stating the full name, ID number and address of the seller, date of the transaction, and a full, accurate and detailed description (to include make, model and serial number) of each article. Dealer shall include photos of the identification of seller and articles being sold. This information should be uploaded to the designated electronic reporting system within 48 hours of the end of said dealer's business day.
B. 
Positive identification in the form of a government photo ID shall be required of the seller, and the type of identification used shall be noted on the dealer's records. This shall not apply to a transaction between secondhand dealers/pawnbrokers as herein defined.
C. 
All electronic transaction records, together with any article listed therein, may be inspected at any time by any duly authorized police officer during regular business hours while making all reasonable efforts not to disrupt the normal course of business.
D. 
No article shall be sold, encumbered by sales contract, or otherwise disposed of or altered in its appearance within 30 days of purchase, unless the secondhand dealer is granted permission in writing from the Chief of Police, but in any case not within 48 hours of time of purchase. Pawnbrokers shall retain nonperishable articles for at least four months and perishable articles for one month. See Subsection E for exemptions.
E. 
Exceptions to Subsections A and D are as follows. Any person accepting a secondhand good as a trade in for a similar item of the same or greater value is exempt from the reporting and holding requirements of this chapter. Secondhand goods do not include used office furniture, used books, pianos, used clothing, or motor vehicles.
F. 
All items purchase or pawned shall remain on the premises during the waiting period; items will not be placed on the sales floor until the waiting period has expired, unless the item is clearly marked as to the sales release date based on the time frames outline in Subsection D.
G. 
Any pawned item repurchased by the original seller shall be recorded and marked "buyback" using the same electronic transaction reporting procedures and will be submitted and electronically reported within 48 hours of the transaction.
A. 
If the Police Department determines that an article is needed for evidence in a criminal investigation, the Police Department shall seize that evidence pursuant to applicable criminal procedures. The secondhand dealer/pawnbroker shall be issued a receipt for the article.
B. 
Pursuant to RSA 595-A:6, the Police Department shall keep seized articles under the court's direction as long as necessary to permit the article to be used as evidence. At the conclusion of all court proceedings or closure of the police investigation the Police Department shall notify the original owner, the secondhand dealer/pawnbroker, and any person who may have a lawful interest that the property will be released in 30 calendar days to the original owner if no other claim is placed on the property.
A. 
Fines for violation of the provisions of this chapter, as adopted by the Board of Selectmen, are on file with the Police Department and on the Town of Salem website. Fines shall not exceed the maximum penalty established pursuant to RSA 31:39, III.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
B. 
The Chief of Police may suspend or revoke said license for just cause. Said action will be stayed if an appeal is filed.
C. 
Any suspension or license revocation by the Chief of Police may be appealed by the licensee to the Board of Selectmen. That appeal must be made within 10 business days of the date of action by the Chief of Police.