Please Note: Amendments by 2014 Pennsylvania SB 1077 (2014 Act 79, approved 06/26/14) and 2014 Pennsylvania HB 80 (2014 Act 192, approved 10/28/14), effective 60 days after enacted, are included and noted in this summary.
Scrap Material is a term used in the Act but not defined. The Act requires recordkeeping for any transaction involving the purchase of Restricted Materials and on any transaction when the purchase of Scrap Material exceeds $100.
"Ferrous metals." Items that are predominantly made from iron or steel that have no further use in their original manufactured form but which can be melted for their metal content and utilized in the manufacture of new products.
"Nonferrous Metals." Items that are predominantly made from metals other than iron and steel, such as copper, brass, aluminum, bronze, lead, zinc, nickel and alloys that have no further use in their original manufactured form but which can be melted for their metal content and utilized in the manufacture of new products.
Restricted Materials, as used in this summary, refers to the following materials as listed in Section 5 that may only be purchased from a Commercial Enterprise:
(added by HB 80) "Secondary Metal" under 18 Pa.C.S. Section 3935 means wire, pipe or cable commonly used by communications, gas and electrical utilities and railroads and mass transit or commuter rail agencies, copper, aluminum or other metal, or a combination of metals, that is valuable for recycling or reuse as raw material.
"Recycling Facility Operator." An owner, operator or employee who operates a facility employing a technology that is a process to separate or classify municipal waste and who creates or recovers reusable materials that can be sold to or reused by a manufacturer as a substitute for or a supplement to virgin raw materials. The term does not include a person who operates a transfer station or landfill for solid waste, composting facility or resource recovery facility.
"Scrap Processor." An owner, operator or employee who, from a fixed location, utilizes machinery and equipment for processing and manufacturing ferrous or nonferrous metallic scrap, paper scrap, plastic scrap, rubber scrap or glass scrap into prepared grades and whose principal product is sold as a raw material in the manufacture of new products.
"Processing." Receiving, storing or reselling Scrap Materials for payment or other financial consideration.
"Seller." Any person, other than a Commercial Enterprise, who sells Scrap Materials to a scrap processor or recycling facility operator.
"Commercial Account." A relationship between a Scrap Processor and a commercial enterprise that is ongoing and properly documented.
"Commercial Enterprise." A corporation, partnership, limited liability company, single proprietorship, association, State agency, political subdivision of the Commonwealth, public corporation or any other legal or commercial entity.
A Processor or Operator must record the following for all Sellers of Restricted Material (as a reminder, Restricted Material may only be purchased from a Commercial Enterprise) as well as any other Seller when the purchase of Scrap Material exceeds $100:
For transactions paid in cash, a Processor or Operator must develop methods of tracking a transaction that obtains the Seller's signature on a receipt for the transaction. The receipt must also include a certification that the Seller is the owner or authorized seller of the scrap material.
A Processor or Operator must create and maintain a permanent record containing the following information with a Commercial Enterprise, including another scrap metal business, in order to establish a Commercial Account:
Each Commercial Enterprise's record shall document every purchase and receipt of ferrous or nonferrous metal and commercial metal property, including, at minimum:
If a financial transaction occurs between the Processor or Operator and the Deliverer, the Processor or Operator must additionally record (italicized text added by SB 1077):
Records must be maintained for a minimum of 2 years from the date of the transaction.
A Processor or Operator shall disclose Seller registration information during normal business hours to any investigative or law enforcement officer or any person acting at their direction or request to investigate suspected criminal activities. Disclosure of Commercial Enterprise registration information is not specified.
A law enforcement officer may issue a Processor or Operator written or verbal notification that certain materials have been reported stolen. An officer must reasonably suspect that the Scrap Material has been lost or stolen, and the material description must be as specific as possible, including, but not limited to, the type and the style of the material, length or weight or any other such descriptions. A Processor or Operator may request the law enforcement officer's name, badge number, and department contact number for a verbal hold notice.
The Processor or Operator must inform law enforcement that the reported material is on their premises within 24 hours of either receiving the hold notice or of receiving the reported materials, and tag and hold the material for up to 48 hours after informing law enforcement. After 48 hours the material must be returned to its owner or released from the hold unless it is extended by a magisterial district judge who has determined that probable cause exists that the scrap is stolen.
A Scrap Processor and Recycling Facility must register with the State Police, with individual registrations for each physical address of a Scrap Processing and Recycling Facility. Registrations are valid for 2 years; there is a $100 fee for each registration or renewal. Registrations must be in writing on a State Police form, or on the form or electronic after the establishment of a state registration database, and include the following:
For an individual or general partnership applicant:
For a corporation, limited liability company, or limited partnership applicant:
Within 14 business days of receiving the registration form and fee, the State Police must issue a written notice of registration identifying the name of the applicant, Scrap Processing and Recycling Facility name and address, and a registration number. Registration numbers must be included in all advertisements distributed in Pennsylvania, and the notice of registration must be clearly visible at the place of business.
The State Police shall establish and maintain a statewide registry of Scrap Processors and Recycling Facilities. The registry information shall be posted on the State Police's publically accessible website. Until July 1, 2016, registration fees shall be used to create an electronic registration database; afterwards, the fees shall be deposited in the general fund.
Violation by a Recycler is a summary offense with a maximum $2,500 fine. A second or subsequent violation is a misdemeanor of the third degree.
(added by SB 1077) Failure to register as a Scrap Processor or Recycling Facility is a summary offense punishable by a fine of $1,000.
(added by SB 1077) Upon conviction of an offense under 18 Pa.C.S. Section 3921 (relating to theft by unlawful taking or disposition) or Section 3925 (relating to receiving stolen property) that relates to the theft of Scrap Material or the transportation of stolen Scrap Material, the court may order the impoundment of any vehicle used in the act for the following periods, with the person convicted responsible for any associated fees:
(added by HB 80) Under 18 Pa.C.S. Section 3935, a person commits Theft of Secondary Metal if they unlawfully take or attempt to take possession of, carry away, or exercise unlawful control over any Secondary Metal with intent to deprive the rightful owner, punishable by:
For a 1st or second offense of Sect. 3935 or Sect. 3921 (theft by unlawful taking or disposition), including a conviction, Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition or other form of preliminary disposition, if the value is:
(added by HB 80) Under 18 Pa.C.S. Section 3503, the offense of simple trespasser includes unlawfully taking Secondary Metal from the premises, punishable as a 1st degree misdemeanor (as opposed to a summary offense for other simple trespasser offenses)
Preempts and supersedes any local ordinance or rule adopted after the effective date of this act (December 8, 2008) which seeks to regulate the processing of scrap materials.
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