AUGUSTA, MAINE - Thieves who try to cash in on metal they steal from homes, businesses and construction sites in Maine may soon have a harder time getting rid of their loot.
The House of Representatives on Thursday gave final approval to a bill to make it more difficult to buy and sell stolen copper, catalytic converters and other salvageable metals. The bill, approved 130-1, was sent to the Senate for a final vote.
Based on the Arkansas law, the bill requires scrap metal processors to pay sellers only with checks and maintain a paper trail to those they pay. Sellers must also sign statements that the metal is not stolen.
Rep. Seth Berry is sponsor of the bill. The Democrat says he sees reports of copper thefts every week, including one that left a Maine town's phone customers without service.