[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Council of the Town of Johnston 9-14-2015 by Ord. No. 2015-2. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Business operations — See Ch. 125.
Licensing — See Ch. 204.
Peddling and soliciting — See Ch. 248.
Zoning — See Ch. 340.
Editor's Note: This ordinance was originally adopted as Ch. 84 but was renumbered to maintain the organizational structure of the Code.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Every person, partnership, or corporation, except a national bank or bank or trust company duly incorporated under the laws of this state, engaged in the business of loaning money on the security of a deposit of any personal property other than choses in action, whether or not a note or other evidence of indebtedness be given by the borrower, shall be deemed to be carrying on the business of a pawnbroker, within the meaning of this chapter, and shall be subject to all the provisions contained in this chapter.
All pawnbroker uses operating in the Town must have a valid annually renewable pawnbroker license issued by the Town of Johnston.
A license can be obtained through the application and licensing process described in this chapter.
Any valid pawnbroker use currently operating in the Town upon the effective date of this chapter shall have 60 days to file an application with the Town Council for a license. During the 60 days and throughout the application process, the business will be allowed to operate. Once an application has been accepted by the Town Council, the business will be allowed to remain open until notification that a request for a license has been denied.
Any person desiring a pawnbroker license shall file with the Town Clerk an original and two copies of a fully completed and sworn license application on the standard application form supplied by the Town Clerk. Completeness of the application shall be determined by the Town Clerk. Each such person and each owner and principal owner, member of a limited liability company, officer, director, or any person holding 10% or more of the corporate stock of a corporation, and all managers, shall be named in the application form, and each of the persons so named shall submit a complete application complying with the following:
A completed application shall contain the following information and shall be accompanied by the following documents:
If the applicant is:
An individual, the individual shall state his/her legal name and any aliases, date of birth, and social security number; or
A legal entity, or other recognized entity, the applicant shall state its complete name, the date and place of its organization, evidence that it is in good standing under the laws of the state in which it is organized, and, if it is organized under the laws of a state other than Rhode Island, that it is registered to do business in Rhode Island, the names and any aliases, social security numbers, and capacity of all officers, directors, managers and principal owners, and the name of the registered agent and the address of the registered office for service of process, if any.
If the applicant intends to operate the pawnbroker use under a name other than that of the applicant, the applicant must state the use's fictitious name.
Whether the applicant or any of the other individuals listed in § 244-2D(1)(a) has had a previous license under his or any other type of pawnbroker licensing process, law, or ordinance from any type of governmental entity anywhere in the United States denied, suspended or revoked, and if so, the name and location of the pawnbroker use for which the license was denied, suspended or revoked, as well as the date of the denial, suspension or revocation.
Whether the applicant or any of the other individuals listed in § 244-2D(1)(a) has been a partner in a partnership or a principal owner of a corporation or legal entity or other recognized legal entity whose license under this or any other type of pawnbroker licensing process, law, or ordinance from any type of governmental entity anywhere in the United States denied, suspended or revoked, and if so, the name and location of the pawnbroker use for which the license was denied, suspended or revoked, as well as the date of the denial, suspension or revocation.
Whether the applicant or any of the other individuals listed in § 244-2D(1)(a) hold any other licenses under this chapter or any other type of pawnbroker licensing process, law, or ordinance from any type of governmental entity anywhere in the United States, and if so, the names and locations of such other licensed uses.
The location of the proposed use, including a legal description of the property, the street address, and all telephone numbers, if any.
Proof of ownership or the applicant's right to possession and use of the property.
The applicant's mailing address and residential address.
A sketch or diagram showing the configuration of the premises, including a statement of total floor space occupied by the use, and showing all interior walls and rooms, said diagram being oriented to the north or some designated street or object and shall be drawn to a designated scale with marked dimensions of the interior of the premises to an accuracy of plus or minus six inches.
A current certificate straight-line drawing prepared within 30 days prior to an initial application by a Rhode Island registered land surveyor depicting the property lines and structures for a radius of 2,500 feet from the proposed use and listing the type of use of each structure within the radius.
If a person who wishes to obtain a license under this chapter is an individual, he/she must sign the application for a pawnbroker license as applicant upon pain and penalty of perjury. If the person is other than an individual, each owner and principal owner of the use must sign the application for a pawnbroker license as applicant upon pain and penalty of perjury.
The Town Clerk shall determine the completeness of the application, and if the application complies it will be accepted for consideration by the Town Council.
Applicants for license under this chapter shall have a continuing duty to promptly supplement application information required herein in the event that said information changes in any material way from what is stated on the application. The failure to comply with said continuing duty within 30 days from the date of such change shall be grounds for suspension of a license.
In the event that the Town Clerk determines or learns at any time that the applicant has improperly completed the application for a pawnbroker license, the Clerk will promptly notify the applicant of such fact and allow the applicant to properly complete the application.
The application process described herein must be repeated for each year that the licensee wishes to renew a license.
The applicant shall pay a nonrefundable application fee of $200 at the time of filing an application under this chapter and at the time of filing of each annual renewal.
The fact that the applicant possesses other types of federal, state, or Town licenses does not exempt such applicant from the requirement for obtaining a license issued pursuant to this chapter.
Once all necessary departments and agencies have returned the photocopies of the application to the Town Clerk, the application will be placed on the agenda for the next scheduled Town Council meeting for public hearing and consideration of the application.
The Town Council shall conduct a review of the application and investigation as part of the public hearing and consideration of the application. The Council shall require the presence of the applicant at the public hearing and may solicit or hear the testimony of any interested party or member of the general public.
The Town Council may direct the Town Clerk to issue the license unless one or more of the criteria set forth in Subsection D(1) below are present.
The license, if issued, shall state on its face the name of the person or persons to whom it is issued, the expiration date, and the address of the use. The license shall be posted in a conspicuous place at or near the entrance to the use. A license issued under this chapter shall be transferable only pursuant to the requirements of renewal as stated herein.
The Town Council shall deny a request for issuance of a license for any of the following reasons:
If the applicant is overdue in payment to the Town of taxes, fees, fines, or penalties assessed or imposed upon the use or its property.
An applicant has failed to provide any information required by this chapter for the issuance of the license or has falsely answered a question on the application form or request for information.
The premises for the use have been disapproved by an inspecting agency on the grounds that the proposed use is in violation of any standard, regulation, law or ordinance adopted or administered by such agency.
The application or license fees have not been paid.
An applicant is found to be in violation of or is not in compliance with any relevant statutes, codes, ordinances, regulations or other laws in effect in the Town.
The granting of the application would violate a court order issued out of any court of competent jurisdiction.
The applicant has had a license issued under this chapter which has been suspended or revoked within the previous 12 months.
An applicant has been convicted of a specified criminal act or acts for which:
Less than two years have elapsed since the date of the conviction or the date of the release from confinement, whichever is the later date, if the conviction is for a misdemeanor offense; or
Less than five years have elapsed since the date of the conviction or the date of the release from confinement, whichever is the later date, if the conviction is for a felony offense; or
Less than five years have elapsed since the date of the conviction or the date of the release from confinement, whichever is the later date, if the convictions are for two or more misdemeanor offenses; or
An appeal is currently pending for the conviction of any misdemeanor or felony.
The corporation for which a license has been issued or requested is not in good standing as required by the Secretary of State or Tax Administrator of the state in which the corporation is incorporated.
If an applicant has had a license issued under this or any other type of pawnbroker licensing process from another city, town, county, state, or country denied, suspended, or revoked for cause within five years of the date of the application.
In the event that the Town Council denies a request for issuance of a license after a public hearing thereon, the Council shall make written findings of fact stating the reason for the denial and will so notify the applicant within five days of such decision. The decision of the Town Council shall constitute a final decision for all purposes.
Notwithstanding any other time periods set forth in this chapter, no license shall be issued by the Town Clerk until the building in which the use is to be housed is ready for occupancy with such furniture, fixtures, and equipment in place as is necessary to comply with the provisions of this chapter as well as any other requirements determined by the building official, and then only after inspection of the premises has been made by the Building Official to determine that the applicant has complied with the plans and specifications submitted upon application.
Notification under this chapter shall mean a mailing to the licensee by regular mail, postage prepaid, at the address listed on the license application, and the effective date for the notice shall be counted from the date of such mailing.
Before any license is issued under the provisions of this chapter, the person applying for the license shall give bond to the Town Treasurer in the penal sum of $2,000 with at least two sureties satisfactory to the Town Council, which sureties shall be residents of the Town, conditioned that he or she will not violate any of the provisions of this chapter, and for the payment of all costs and damages incurred by any violation of this chapter, and the other fines and penalties provided for in this section for any violation of the provisions of this chapter shall not affect the liability of the obligor upon the bond.
Every person carrying on the business of pawnbroker without a license shall be fined $200 for the first offense and $500 for the second and every subsequent offense.
Any license granted may be revoked and annulled by the Town Council at any time without affecting any liability under the bonds to be given and without any claim for the money, or any part of the money, paid for the license.