Louisiana House Bill 195 Bans Use of Cash-Previously Truth! But Now Resolved!
Summary of eRumor:
Louisiana House Bill 195 makes it illegal to use cash to purchase second-hand goods in the state.
This is an old story that was re-reported as breaking news four years after it was resolved.
It’s true that Louisiana House Bill 195 made it illegal to use cash to purchase some second-hand items. But the measure was approved back in 2011, and the controversial parts were later taken out.
Four years after House Bill 195 was initially approved, the website Government Slaves re-reported the story as “breaking news” in mid-2015:
“Louisiana businesses are suddenly discovering a new law that flew under the radar during the last legislative session:
“Cold hard cash. It’s good everywhere you go, right? You can use it to pay for anything.
“But that’s not the case here in Louisiana now. It’s a law that was passed during this year’s busy legislative session.
“House bill 195 basically says those who buy and sell second hand goods cannot use cash to make those transactions, and it flew so far under the radar most businesses don’t even know about it.”
That story about the “criminalization of cash” was lifted directly from a 2011 report by KFLY, a local broadcaster in Baton Rouge, on the legislation’s impact on local second-hand dealers.
Many blog sites picked up the story in 2015, and soon many readers believed that House Bill 195 had just been approved. Reports that cash had been criminalized in in Louisiana quickly went viral.
Back in 2011, State Rep. Rickey Hardy said he had co-sponsored House Bill 195 to deter criminals from stealing and re-selling merchandise to second-hand dealers, “It’s a mechanism to be used so the police department has something to go on and have a lead.”
Instead of cash, Hardy said, people could use checks, cashier’s checks or electronic transactions to purchase second-hand goods in the state.
House Bill 195 was approved in July 2011 and it took effect in August 2011. Second-hand dealers who failed to comply with the bill three times or more could have been fined up to $10,000 and face up to five years in prison — but that didn’t stick.
An amendment to House Bill 195 was approved in 2012 that struck the bill’s controversial parts. The amended version made the law apply only to businesses that purchase second-hand copper, which is frequently stolen from buildings and sold to scrap dealers.
So, it’s legal to buy second-hand goods at flea markets, pawnshops and garage sales in Louisiana with cash, contrary to what the eRumor reports.