Shrewsbury – A plan to help stop commerce in stolen jewelry, proposed by Chief of Police James Hester at the March 26 meeting of the Board of Selectmen, was approved at a public hearing during the board's April 9 meeting.
Until now, according to officials, some licensed dealers in second-hand jewelry have been careless or worse in their behavior regarding trading in what was subsequently discovered to be stolen property. Shrewsbury has experienced multiple thefts of jewelry and its alleged reselling by junk dealers, whether the source of the jewelry is known or not.
Hester's proposal to help curb these abuses includes:
1. Requiring a log be kept by the dealer identifying the seller in writing, along with pictures of the seller and the item bought by the dealer.
2. Requiring the log be kept onsite and available to police or any other investigating official for at least 21 days after the item is bought by the dealer.
3. ?Requiring all logs and records be available to the police, upon request, for a period of at least one year.
Town Manager Daniel Morgado noted that neighboring towns have a similar system which has served them well. The board unanimously approved the plan.
In other business, the board heard an update from representatives of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) regarding the Longhorn Beetle infestation in Shrewsbury. According to the officials, the Hill Street area in the northwest part of town bordering Worcester has been hardest hit. A 6.3 acre parcel of land, encompassing four lots, is next on the list of land to be deforested to stop the advance of the troublesome insect. The pests have in particular decimated their favorite trees, the red maples. The work is anticipated to be completed by the end of May. A map of the affected area is available at Town Hall.
In other action, Town Treasurer Carolyn Marcotte gave an update on the bond refunding for the Oak Middle School and the North Shore School. She reported that a total savings of $459,000 has been realized over the life of the bond through combining lower interest rates and refinancing. The board then moved to approve refunding of bonds through 2024.