New law may affect Athens pawnbrokers

 by Chari Sutherland

Pawnbrokers in Athens may have new rules to follow in a few months.  On February18, the Athens-Clarke County Board of Commissioners discussed a proposal to amend an ordinance affecting pawnbrokers and second-hand dealers.  The proposal was sent to the County Commission by the Athens-Clarke County police department on February 4.  It requested that all pawnbrokers institute a new electronic system of recording the property they receive into their stores. 

If the ordinance is amended, it will require all pawnbrokers to begin using an electronic ticketing system, to hold items an additional 20 days before allowing them to be sold and to require customers to show picture identification before pawning items.  Police will be able to track items from their headquarters through an internet database, rather than going out to collect copies of pawn tickets. 

Commissioner Kathy Hoard said she agreed with the proposal’s intentions, particularly the changes requiring that those pawning items show identification and increasing the holding period from ten days to 30.      

“I can’t imagine anyone wanting to do the right thing wouldn’t want to adopt this legislation,” Hoard said. 

Mayor Heidi Davidson invited comments from the audience.  There were none.

A vote on this item will occur at the Commission meeting on April 6.  At that time, the public will be offered another chance to comment.