Senator Tom Berryhill is a fourth-generation California farmer who has himself felt the effect of Metal Theft. Tom, who started his first term in the Legislature in December 2006, served on the Assembly Utilities and Commerce and Water, Parks and Wildlife committees, and as Vice Chair of the Assembly Agriculture and Human Services committees. He currently serves on the Senate Agriculture, Energy, Utilities and Communications, Governmental Organization, Human Services and Veterans Affairs committees.
In an effort to combat Metal Theft he authored AB 844 (2007) - to confront the issue of metal theft by requiring payment by check with a three day hold in order to eliminate the quick cash fix which motivates the drug users committing this crime.
Thanks to Senator Berryhill, Law Enforcement has been provided with tools to dismantle the scourge of Metal Theft. Tom is currently working on a bill to further reduce the impact of Metal Theft on our communities.
Existing AB 844 regultation requires recyclers to:
Additionally, anyone convicted of metal theft is required to pay restitution for the metals stolen. Proposed changes to AB 844 (21606-21609) will require recyclers to apply additional scrutiny including:
California Penal Code 496A provides legislation for every person being a dealer in or collector of junk metals. This legislation requires that any dealer or collector use sufficient due diligence to ascertain that a person selling or delivering scrap metals has legal right to do so. Failure to perform appropriate due diligence is a felony. The legislation also provides definitions of junk dealers and certain metals that would reasonably be known to have been acquired illegally such as metals from railroads and utilities.
San Francisco, CA, July1st 2013 Supervisor Malia Cohen introduced legislation to better regulate the sale of metal, copper and other junk materials.
As a result of numerous neighborhood concerns and undercover investigations by the San Francisco Police Department that revealed some junk dealers accepting stolen materials and false identification fro sellers, Supervisor Cohen introduced legislation to: 1) Reform the existing permitting process for junk dealers to better incorporate State regulations; 2) Require that junk dealers annually renew their permits; 3) Restrict who can sell, collect or otherwise dispose of Junk and 4) Enable the Police Department to condition, suspend or revoke a junk dealer permit due to violations of this ordinance or nuisance behavior.
“We have seen metal thieves go to great lengths to steal copper and metal including breaking into private homes and businesses, climbing dangerous utility transformers, sailing boats into the Hunter's Point Shipyard and even pulling up copper wiring from cable car lines,” said Supervisor Malia Cohen. “Metal thieves jeopardize not only their safety but the safety of others, cause thousands of dollars in damage and disrupt the delivery of important utility and transit services. Better regulation of this industry is essential in order to combat the trafficking of stolen metal and address public nuisances and crime.” Read the full SFGate article.