Second-hand dealer ordinance draws debate at Sioux City City Hal - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Second-hand dealer ordinance draws debate at Sioux City City Hall

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) - An effort to even the playing field for pawn dealers is drawing criticism from antique shop owners and city officials.

The police department says pawn brokers have complained that their business isn't much different from consignment shops, yet the city has two different sets of rules.

Pawn shops have to wait 15-days before reselling an item.  Second hand stores don't.

The police department says that gives the consignment shops and antique dealers an unfair advantage over pawn shops.

"Pawn shops can't be open on Sunday's, second-hand dealers can. So, we took that part out and allowed them to be open. If you look at the pawn ordinance that's been interpreted that a pawn shop can only conduct business at their business, they can't go out and do an estate buy," said Captain Mel Williams, of the SCPD.

Williams says the police department's aim to improve their ability to track stolen merchandise.

The new ordinance calls for all goods to be photographed and cataloged electronically.

Two antique dealers spoke out against the idea, saying the police are trying to fix a problem that doesn't exist... because they have different customers.

"To take a photograph of every item, ask this 90-year-old woman to either finger print her or take her picture like a mug shot is ridiculous, it's unnecessary, and she would not do it," said Jason Swaggerty-Morgan, owner of the Whistle Stop Consignment Shop in downtown Sioux City.

Sioux City's Mayor called the ordinance, "government at its worst."

"I think this is way too far reaching. I think this is going to cause more problems then it's going to solve," said Bob Scott.

A decision was deferred for two weeks.

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