By a three-two vote, Maysville City Commission approved the first reading of an ordinance Thursday that will require dealers in precious metal to register transactions in a national database.
The system is called LeadsOnline and is already a state requirement for pawnbrokers.
Under the proposal, dealers in precious metals and other traceable items would be required to hold items for up to 10 days before reselling them to ensure the items are not listed as stolen, officials said.
The ordinance was first introduced earlier this year but rejected by commissioners. In the interim, changes have been made to the ordinance such as the exclusion of all items with serial numbers and electronics, officials said.
Commissioner Jerry Schumacher, who voted against the ordinance, said the ordinance is a blow to commerce.
"It tells me we are trying to tie everybody's hands," he said. "We need to have some common sense."
Mayor David Cartmell, who gaveled down several people shouting objections to the ordinance, said the proposal provides protection to citizens who are victims of crimes. According to the mayor, 285 thefts were reported in Maysville in 2016.
"I can't believe any city commissioner would go against this...," Cartmell said. "I just don't understand."
Cartmell was joined by Commissioners Kelly Ashley and Judy Pfeffer in voting in favor of the ordinance with Commissioner Victor McKay and Schumacher voting "no."
A second reading and publication of the ordinance are required before it would become law.
In another contentious moment, Assistant City Attorney Kelly Caudill threatened to take a microphone from activist Bryan Helpinstine during a public comment period of the meeting. Helpinstine, who has for months promoted the purchase of body cams for the Maysville Police Department, once again asked for an update on the equipment.
When told by City Manager Matt Wallingford that no update was forthcoming, Helpinstine began making accusations about police officers. At that point, Caudill told Helpinstine that he was out of order and told him to put down the microphone. Helpinstine countered by challenging Caudill to take it from him. Before Caudill could act, Assistant Police Chief Jared Muse stepped in to take the microphone, defusing the situation.
Also Thursday, commissioners voted unanimously to uphold a Joint Planning Commission recommendation rejecting a request to rezone 1.97 acres along U.S. 62/68 in Old Washington from single-family residential to highway business. In rejecting the request, Pfeffer cited the historic nature of the area and called historic preservation "paramount" in the community.
In other business, commissioners:
-- Appointed Mike Thomas to fill a vacancy on the Human Rights Commission.
-- Awarded a contract for demolition of property at 779 Flemingsburg Road and 200 East Fourth Street.
-- Authorized a letter of support for the Women's Crisis Center for a temporary liquor license for the downtown New Year's Eve celebration.
-- Approved appointment and promotion for the Fire Department.
-- Agreed to revisit issues on the street sweeper next month with possible passage of an ordinance in the early spring.
-- Planned a trip to Indianapolis to see how automated garbage collection operates.
-- Authorized a letter of commitment for the Kentucky Main Street Program.
-- Approved a resolution of support for US Bike Route 21 which will pass through Maysville.
-- Removed the residency requirement for police and fire.
-- Approved several amendments to the code of ordinances.