4800 West 92nd Avenue Westminster, CO 80031

City Government


8. Pawn Brokers

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5-8-1:  LEGISLATIVE INTENT:  (3563)  In addition to the findings expressed in Section 5-1-1, W.M.C., the City Council finds that the local regulation of the pawn shop industry is necessary to protect the citizens of Westminster from potentially fraudulent criminal conduct in connection with the receipt, purchase, and sale of pawned property.

5-8-2:  DEFINITIONS:  (1965 3563)  The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this Chapter, shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

“Applicant” shall mean: (1)  an individual, or (2)  all general or limited partners of a partnership, or (3)  all members of the board of directors or shareholders of a corporation, that applies for a license pursuant to this Chapter.

“Contract for Pawn” shall mean a contract entered into between a pawnbroker and a customer pursuant to which money is advanced to the customer by the pawnbroker on the delivery of tangible personal property by the customer on the condition that the customer, for a fixed price and within a fixed period of time, to be no less than thirty (30) days, has the option to cancel said contract. 

“Fixed Price” shall mean the amount agreed upon to cancel a contract for pawn during the option period.  Said fixed price shall not exceed one-fifth (1/5) of the original purchase price for each month, plus the original purchase price.

“Fixed Time” shall mean that period of time, to be no less than thirty (30) days, as set forth in a contract for pawn, for an option to cancel said contract. 

“Option” shall mean the fixed time and the fixed price agreed upon by the customer and the pawnbroker in which a contract for pawn may be, but does not have to be, rescinded by the customer. 

“Pawnbroker” shall mean a person regularly engaged in the business of making contracts for pawn and/or purchase transactions in the course of his business. 

“Purchase Transaction” shall mean the purchase by a pawnbroker in the course of his business of tangible personal property for resale, other than newly manufactured tangible personal property that has not previously been sold at retail, when such purchase does not constitute a contract for pawn. 

“Tangible Personal Property” shall mean all personal property other than choses in action, securities, or printed evidences of indebtedness, which property is deposited with or otherwise actually delivered into the possession of a pawnbroker in the course of his business in connection with a contract for pawn or purchase transaction.

5-8-3:  LICENSE REQUIRED:  (1965 3563)

(A) It shall be unlawful for any person to act as a pawnbroker within the City of Westminster without first obtaining a license to conduct such business pursuant to this Chapter.

(B) All requirements specified in Article 56 of Title l2, C.R.S, are hereby incorporated by reference in this Chapter.  In the event of a conflict between those requirements and the requirements set forth herein, the more restrictive requirement shall apply.

5-8-4:  LICENSE APPLICATION:  (1965 3563)

(A) The applicant for a license shall submit a verified application to the City Clerk on forms provided by the City Clerk, which shall include the following information:

(1) Name, address, telephone number, and description of the applicant, including date of birth.  In the case of a corporation, the names, addresses and telephone numbers of the corporation and the agent for service of process.

(2) The names and addresses of any other pawn shops owned or operated by the applicant in the state of Colorado.

(3) A statement of whether the applicant has been convicted of any crime, misdemeanor or violation of any federal, state or municipal law, the nature of the offense and the punishment or penalty assessed therefor.

(4) A brief statement or drawing of the nature and character of the signage or advertising to be used.

(5) The location of the proposed business.

(6) A copy of the applicant's lease or other evidence of the applicant's right to possession of the premises.

(7) Information regarding the zoning of the location of the premises.

(8) Such other reasonable information as to the identity or character of the applicant as may be determined by the Chief of Police to be necessary for the protection of the public welfare. 

(B) The applicant for a license renewal shall submit a verified application to the City Clerk on forms provided by the City Clerk, which shall include any information listed in subsection (A), above, that has changed since the original application or the last renewal application. 

(C) If the application is approved by the City Manager, upon posting the bond required by this Chapter and payment of the prescribed annual license fee by the applicant, the license shall be issued. 

(D) All original applications shall be accompanied by a one thousand dollar ($1,000) non-refundable application fee to defray the cost of reviewing and evaluating the application.  No application fee is refundable in the event of revocation or suspension of a license.  The application fee may be refunded at the discretion of the City Manager, if an application for a license is denied.

5-8-5:  APPLICATION REVIEW:  (1965 3563)

(A) Upon receipt of an application, the City Clerk shall forward it to the City Manager and the Chief of Police.  The Chief of Police shall cause such investigation of the applicant to be made as the Chief may deem necessary for the protection of the public and return his recommendations to the City Manager.  The City Manager shall consider the following factors prior to approving or denying an application:

(1)  Whether the investigation discloses that the applicant has been convicted of misdemeanors or felonies that were not disclosed on the application;

(2) If the applicant has disclosed convictions on the application, whether the nature of the offenses are relevant to the operation of a pawn shop.  If such convictions exist, the City Manager may also consider that number of convictions and the length of time since the last conviction;

(3) Whether investigation of other pawn shops operated by the applicant indicates a failure to comply with the requirements of state law;

(4) Whether the investigation discloses other identifiable threats to public safety.

(B) If the application or license renewal is approved by the City Manager, upon posting the bond required by this Chapter and payment of the annual license fee by the applicant, the license will be issued.

(C) The initial application and annual license fee for pawn shops shall be one thousand dollars ($1,000).

(D) All licenses issued pursuant to this Chapter shall expire annually on December 31, unless cancelled, suspended or revoked, and shall be renewed annually upon application for renewal and payment of the annual license fee.  The renewal application shall be reviewed by the City Manager, who shall have the power to grant or deny such license renewal and to impose reasonable limitations and restrictions on any license renewed.  The City Manager shall evaluate the application under the criteria set forth for original applications.

5-8-6:  LICENSE DENIAL, NON-RENEWAL, SUSPENSION, CANCELLATION, OR REVOCATION:  (1965 2574 3563)  A license may be denied, cancelled, denied renewal, suspended or revoked for any violation of the provisions of this Chapter, or for any reason set forth in Chapter 1 of this Title.

5-8-7:  BOND REQUIRED:  (1965 3646)  Before any license shall be issued to an applicant pursuant to this Chapter, each applicant shall file with the City Clerk a cash bond, certified funds payable to the City, or a surety bond running to the City in the sum of ten thousand dollars ($10,000).  If a surety bond is provided, it shall be executed by the applicant as principal and at least one surety upon which service of process may be made in the State of Colorado.  The bond shall be conditioned that the applicant shall comply fully with all the provisions of the laws of the City and the statutes of the State of Colorado regulating and concerning the applicant's business, and will pay all judgments rendered against the applicant for any violation of said laws or statutes, together with all judgments and costs that may be recovered against him by any person for damage growing out of any such business with the applicant.  Action on the bond may be brought in the name of the City for the benefit of the aggrieved person.  Such bond must be approved by the City Attorney, both as to form and as to the responsibility of the surety. 

5-8-8:  LICENSE ADMINISTRATION:  (1965 3563)

(A) Every pawnbroker shall provide the Westminster Police Department, on a weekly basis, with two (2) records, on a form to be provided or approved by the Police Department, of all tangible personal property accepted during the preceding week and one (1) copy of the customer's declaration of ownership.  The form shall contain the same information required to be recorded in the pawnbroker's register pursuant to Section 5-8-9(A) and (B), W.M.C.  The Police Department shall designate the day of the week on which the records and declarations shall be submitted.

(B) The Police Department will issue a quarterly invoice to each licensee listing the charges for all forms used by the Police Department pursuant to the State statute regulating pawn shops.  The  pawnbroker shall pay the invoices within thirty (30) days.

(C) In the event of a transfer of a pawn shop ownership: 

(1) Prior to or within thirty (30) days after the transfer of ownership of a pawn shop, or of the transfer of ownership of any of the capital stock of the corporation, the new owner of the stock or business shall file with the City Clerk a written report of the transfer on forms provided by the City Clerk.  The report shall be accompanied by an investigation fee of two hundred and fifty dollars ($250).

(2) Upon receipt of the report of transfer, the City Clerk shall report the transfer to the City Manager.  After sufficient investigation by the Police Department, the City Manager may approve or deny the transfer.  Criteria for approval shall be the same as for an original application.  The City Manager shall consider the character of the proposed new owner or owners and whether the new owner or owners comply with all requirements of the Code and rules and regulations adopted pursuant to the Code.  If the new owner or owners are not approved, the license may be revoked.

5-8-9:  CONDITIONS OF OPERATION:  (1965 3563)

(A) A pawnbroker shall keep a numerical register in which he shall record the following information:

(1) The name, address, and date of birth of the customer, and the driver's license number or other identification number from any other form of identification that is allowed for the sale of valuable articles pursuant to Section 18-16-103, C.R.S., or for the sale of secondhand property pursuant to Section 18-13-114, C.R.S.;

(2) The date, time, and place of the contract for pawn or purchase transaction; and

(3) An accurate and detailed account and description of each item of tangible personal property, including, but not limited to, any trademark, identification number, serial number, model number, brand name, or other identifying marks on such property. 

(B) The pawnbroker shall also obtain a written declaration of the customer's ownership, which shall state that the tangible personal property is totally owned by the customer, or shall have attached to such declaration a power of sale from the partial owner to the customer, how long the customer has owned the property, whether the customer or someone else found the property, and, if the property was found, the details of the finding. 

(C) The pawnbroker shall require the customer to sign his name in the numerical register or other tangible or electronic record and on the declaration of ownership, and the pawnbroker shall give the customer a copy of the contract for pawn or a receipt of the purchase transaction. 

(D) The pawnbroker shall require the customer to place an indelible print of the customer’s index finger on the numerical register or other tangible record of the transaction.

(E) The pawnbroker shall make the numerical register or other tangible or electronic record available to the Westminster Police Department for inspection at any reasonable time. 

(F) The pawnbroker shall keep each register or other tangible or electronic record for at least three (3) years after the date of the last transaction entered in the register.

(G) A pawnbroker shall hold all contracted goods within his jurisdiction for a period of ten (10) days following the maturity date of the contract for pawn, during which time such goods shall be held separate and apart from any other tangible personal property and shall not be changed in form or altered in any way. 

(H) A pawnbroker shall hold all property purchased by him through a purchase transaction for thirty (30) days following the date of purchase, during which time such property shall be held separate and apart from any other tangible personal property and shall not be changed in form or altered in any way.

5-8-10:  PROHIBITED ACTS:  (1965 3563)

(A) It shall be unlawful for any pawnbroker:

(1) To enter into a contract for pawn or purchase transaction with any individual under the age of eighteen (18) years;

(2) To permit any customer to become obligated on the same day in any way under more than one (1) contract for pawn agreement with the pawnbroker that would result in the pawnbroker obtaining a greater amount of money than would be permitted if the pawnbroker and customer had entered into only one (1) contract for pawn covering the same tangible personal property; or

(3) To violate the terms of the contract for pawn.

(B) It shall be unlawful for a customer to knowingly give false information with respect to the information required by Section 5-8-9(A), (B), or (C), W.M.C.

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