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New legislation should help crush metal theft

In a flurry of activity before adjourning for the summer, Ohio’s General Assembly approved a thick stack of legislation. Gov. John Kasich signed 13 bills on one day alone.

Much of this legislation has far reaching consequences for education, criminal justice and economic development and the efficacy of the new laws won’t be known for years.

But at least one bill is worthy of immediate applause, and that is Senate Bill 193, introduced by Sen. Bill Seitz of Hamilton County. It requires scrap-metal dealers to take a photograph of every person selling an article to the dealer and keep the photograph as part of the sales record.

Years ago, keeping such a photographic record would have been burdensome. But digital cameras and cellphones that take pictures make compliance with the new law a snap. …

From plumbing stolen from houses in the city to air conditioner condensers taken from suburban homes and businesses, thieves are willing to cost their victims thousands of dollars in damage for a few hundred dollars in illicit profit. …

With Gov. Kasich’s signing of S.B. 193, metal thefts become higher risk, and we all become less attractive targets for scrap-metal thieves.

The (Youngstown) Vindicator