News Release Header
For Immediate Release:
June 13, 2013
Media Contact:
Marta Martinez-Aleman


Commissioner Edmonson sponsors ordinance making stolen scrap metal more difficult to buy and sell

(Miami-Dade County, FL) -- Commissioner Audrey M. Edmonson’s proposed ordinance making it tougher to buy and sell scrap metal was approved by the Miami-Dade County Commission at its June 4, 2013 meeting held at the Stephen P. Clark Center, 111 N.W. 1 St., Miami. 

The ordinance, which will go into effect June 14, 2013, creates more stringent regulations for junk dealers and scrap metal processors making the sale of stolen regulated metals more difficult.  The changes include expanding the list of restricted items, limiting hours for purchase transactions, requiring training before certain permits are issued and increasing civil penalties for violations. 

The ordinance reflects the work and input of the Scrap Metal and Copper Wire Theft Task Force, called by Commissioner Edmonson and chaired by Miami-Dade County Police Lt. Denise J. Bernhard. The Task Force’s members represented scrap metal dealers, law enforcement, municipalities, residents, Florida Power and Light (FPL) and the State Attorney’s office. 

“There is no full-proof way to eliminate scrap metal theft,” Commissioner Edmonson said. “but I believe this ordinance gives the County and specifically the County Police Department the necessary tools to more effectively enforce regulations.  I believe we will reduce the incidence of thefts. Scrap metal theft not only costs government money when light poles are vandalized, for example, but also hurts residents, churches, schools and other entities when air conditioning units and other large metal structures are stolen. 

“The next step is for the Task Force to initiate education and outreach for the industry, public and other police departments,” Commissioner Edmonson said. “I thank the members of the Task Force for taking time away from their businesses and jobs to make this collaborative effort a reality.” 

To read the full ordinance: