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November 13, 2013FORSYTH COUNTY, Ga. — The Forsyth County Commission held the first public hearing on an ordinance that would set regulations regarding dealers of precious metals and gems.
At their Nov. 7 regular meeting, the board held the first of two public hearings on the new law that would set regulations for dealers, or someone who buys and sells precious metals or gems.
The new law sets a permit fee and will be regulated and monitored by the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office.
There are exceptions to the definition of dealer, including those who work on consignment basis, also the ordinance does not apply to those who deal in coin collection or study of coins.
Transactions of gems and metals by people who are not dealers will not be regulated.
"The permitting scheme will be operated by the sheriff," said County Attorney Ken Jarrard.
If there's a suspension of a permit, the board of commissioners will hold a public hearing and the dealer will have the right to challenge the suspension.
"Dealers, who are permitted and licensed, will have to keep meticulous records," Jarrard said. "They are required to make daily electronic reports of all precious metals that come in and are sold to them."
In addition, the new requirements will include a fingerprint of the seller, a digital image of the article being sold and daily reports in an electronic reporting system.
Any items fenced will have to be held by a dealer for 30 days before it can be sold.
The intention of the new law is to capture stolen or illegally obtained materials, Jarrard said.
The new law would impact existing businesses.
"You don't get to vest out of this," Jarrard said. "You will be subject to this immediately."
No permitting fee has been set and the second public hearing takes place in December.