6-month pawnshop moratorium enacted in Kenmore - The Buffalo News
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6-month pawnshop moratorium enacted in Kenmore

People looking to pawn their jewelry, electronics or collectibles will have to look somewhere other than the Village of Kenmore for at least the next six months.

The Village Board on Tuesday night enacted a six-month moratorium on pawnshops after signs advertising those services appeared in the village’s Delaware Avenue business core.

“There were signs put up in a vacant storefront advertising one, so we thought we should look into that because we don’t have anything in our code that addresses that type of establishment,” said Village Clerk-Treasurer Kathleen P. Johnson.

Known primarily for giving out loans, pawnshops also buy items to sell. And they accept a wide array of merchandise – from video game systems to jewelry to musical instruments.

“We’ve had no formal contact, and no approvals have been sought,” Johnson said. “There’s been nothing put in to the village officially at all.”

The law also states, “The board is concerned with respect to the secondary effects of pawnshops, specifically criminal activity and trafficking in stolen property.”

Some people view pawnshops as unsavory establishments where looted wares are freely accepted and sold. Pawnshops are currently not permitted in the village’s “restricted business use district,” Johnson said.

The moratorium will give lawmakers a chance to review Village zoning code and decide how to proceed, said Mayor Patrick Mang.

“It’s giving us six months to take a look at if we want to permit them or if we don’t and how we want to approach similar types of businesses like check-cashing,” he said.

The board passed a separate law Tuesday regulating the placement of amateur, or ham, radio antennas. The law includes a $1,000 application fee for a special-use permit.

“We had somebody put in an application and we advised him – similarly to the other issue – that we didn’t have any legislation pertaining to ham radios and that we would be looking into it,” Johnson said.

Also at Tuesday’s board meeting:

• Newly elected Trustee Katie Burd was sworn in by State Supreme Court Justice Tracey A. Bannister with a large group of friends and family in attendance.

Burd, a political newcomer who is active in overseeing local libraries, was elected in November with incumbent Paul P. Catalano for the two uncontested seats.

• Johnson was appointed by the board to another two-year term as village clerk, a position she has held since 2001.

email: jpopiolkowski@buffnews.com

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