Maui News

Rep. Sayama Introduces Bill To Alleviate Catalytic Converter Thefts

February 1, 2021, 1:43 PM HST
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Freshman Hawaiʻi State Rep. Jackson Sayama is working to pass House Bill 446 that addresses the growing problem of thefts of catalytic converters from vehicles. Photo Courtesy: Rep. Jackson Sayama

Freshman Hawaiʻi State Rep. Jackson Sayama and several state lawmakers introduced House Bill 446 that would help alleviate the increasing thefts of catalytic converters from vehicles. The bill passed first reading in the House and has been assigned to committees.

Catalytic converters contain precious metals that thieves steal and then sell as the price of metal skyrockets, according to police.

The bill calls for new requirements on the buyer and seller of catalytic converters and increases fines for violators. Businesses that buy used parts and metals would be required to refuse the purchase of used motor vehicle parts or accessories and report the attempted sale to police if a seller does not provide appropriate information at the time of the attempted sale.

The bill would help protect families dependent on their vehicles to go to work and take their children to school, said Sayama (D-20, St. Louis Heights, Pālolo, Maunalani Heights, Wilhelmina Rise, Kaimukī).

“Many families are already struggling with the pandemic and don’t have an extra $1,000 to $2,000 to replace their stolen catalytic converter,” Sayama said. “Just as the legislature cracked down on the theft of copper in 2013, we must place safeguards to prevent the illegal trade and theft of catalytic converters now.”

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