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Relating to the regulation of crafted precious metal dealers; authorizing the change of a fee.
No fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
SB 1132 would allow the Public Safety Commissioner, or their representative, to examine each place of business of a crafted metal dealer, also known as a metal recycling entity, and to investigate the dealer’s transactions and records, including books, accounts, papers, and correspondence, to the extent the transactions and records pertain to the business regulated under existing law, whenever the commissioner considers these actions necessary.
Texas Action opposes SB 1132 because it violates our limited government and free market principles. The bill would grant the Public Safety Commissioner overreaching authority to examine and investigate the records of metal recycling entities, not in accordance with an audit schedule, but whenever the commissioner may choose to do so and without a warrant.
The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution states:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
No matter how noble the sentiment behind this bill, it is impossible to square SB 1132 with the plain text of the Fourth Amendment or with the Texas Constitution which has a similar provision under Article 1.