Delegate Brian McHale and several co-sponsors have introduced HB 1536, yet another bill to regulate and oversee scrap metal dealers across the state. The bill contains one essential provision from the local government perspective — instead of actively pre-empting tougher local laws, this bill explicitly preserves them.
From page 7, lines 17-20 of the bill text:
(3) THIS SECTION MAY NOT BE CONSTRUED TO PREEMPT A COUNTY OR MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT FROM ENACTING AND ENFORCING MORE STRINGENT MEASURES TO CURB THE THEFT AND RESALE OF JUNK AND SCRAP METAL.
MACo has consistently argued that pre-emption was the key flaw in other legislation considered this year, and that allowing local laws to stand was essential in passing a “good scrap bill.” The Baltimore Sun agreed in a recent opinion piece.