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News Release    

December 3, 2009      

For Further Information Contact:
William R. Steinhaus, County Executive
(845) 486-2000

Residents Advised to Be Cautious of Cash for Gold and other precious metal promotions

Poughkeepsie…  The price of gold and other precious metals have set all time highs in recent months with gold soaring to over $1200 per ounce, making “Cash for Gold” promotions more and more popular.    Before deciding to sell gold or other precious metals, Dutchess County Executive William R. Steinhaus reminds all residents to first check to see if they are dealing with a reputable precious metal or coin purchasing operation by contacting the Dutchess County Department of Consumer Affairs.    

Inspectors from Consumer Affairs have been busy in recent months working to make sure the ever-increasing number of “Cash for Gold” promotions are legitimate.   Inspectors issued a Cease and Desist Order to Phoenix Coins, LLC of Arizona for operating an unlicensed precious metal purchasing establishment at a Town of Poughkeepsie hotel.   Phoenix Coin, LLC of Arizona was issued a maximum civil penalty for operating an unlicensed precious metal purchasing establishment and a civil penalty for operating their establishment with an uncertified scale that was used to determine the value of the metals.

“Consumers need to be aware of who they are dealing with in any transaction,” said County Executive Steinhaus.  “Smart consumers should always check to see if the establishment is known to our Consumer Affairs agency to ensure they are dealing with a legitimate, legal business.”

The Dutchess County Department of Consumer Affairs works to protect consumers from fraudulent precious metal and coin purchasing operations.    Inspectors insure precious metal establishments operate certified scales for measuring metal weight and have met other legal requirements for transactions.    Establishments are required to post Precious Metal Licenses in a clearly visible area for consumers.    Positive identification is required for all transactions, which helps to deter theft and subsequent selling of stolen precious metals.

“We encourage residents to contact Consumer Affairs and report any establishment that promotes “Cash for Gold” or similar promotions when a Precious Metal License is not clearly displayed or if the seller is not asked to present identification,” said Consumer Affairs Director Nelson Kranker.

Under the law, dating from the late 1970s, the Dutchess County Department of Consumer Affairs inspects all precious metal purchasing establishments in Dutchess County to ensure compliance and closes those that are not licensed.

To learn more about the services available through the Dutchess County Department of Consumer Affairs, visit or call (845) 486-2949.


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Last Updated: 12/3/2009