The Arkansas House passed a measure Friday requiring all pawn shops in the state to electronically send to law enforcement their records of who is selling property.
The measure, which is aimed at helping criminal investigations, would mostly affect rural pawn shops that aren't already uploading the information to a secure tracking system, according to Tim Collier, president of the Arkansas Pawnbrokers Association.
"It's only going to impact the smaller, mom-and-pop brokers in rural Arkansas," he said. "They're hand-writing that information and then giving it to police on a weekly basis."
Collier said the vast majority of the pawnbrokers' association membership already submits its records online and estimated that, overall, about two-thirds of pawn shops in the state follow that practice.
Under the bill, which was sponsored by Rep. Homer Lenderman, D-Brookland, all pawn shops would be required to upload, on a daily basis, the data they already collect about purchases and sales to a centralized online database chosen by local law enforcement officials.
Pawn shops currently must keep detailed records of transactions that include the name, age, address, race, sex, height, weight, and driver's license number of the person pawning property.
The House passed the measure by an 82-2 vote on Friday. The bill now heads to a Senate committee.