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Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1989 

                        CHAPTER 247-S.F.No. 353 
           An act relating to commerce; regulating currency 
          exchanges; requiring currency exchanges to be licensed 
          by the commissioner of commerce; requiring charges to 
          be reasonable; appropriating money; proposing coding 
          for new law as Minnesota Statutes, chapter 53A. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  [53A.01] [DEFINITIONS.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [CURRENCY EXCHANGE.] "Currency exchange" 
means any person, except a bank, trust company, savings bank, 
savings and loan association, credit union, or industrial loan 
and thrift company, engaged in the business of cashing checks, 
drafts, money orders or travelers' checks for a fee.  "Currency 
exchange" does not include a person who provides these services 
incidental to the person's primary business if the charge for 
cashing a check or draft does not exceed $1 or one percent of 
the value of the check or draft, whichever is greater.  
    Subd. 2.  [COMMISSIONER.] "Commissioner" means the 
commissioner of commerce. 
    Sec. 2.  [53A.02] [LICENSE.] 
    A person may not engage in the business of a currency 
exchange without first obtaining a license from the 
commissioner.  A person may operate currency exchanges at more 
than one location with one license. 
    Sec. 3.  [53A.03] [APPLICATION FOR LICENSE; FEES.] 
    (a) An application for a license must be in writing, under 
oath, and in the form prescribed and furnished by the 
commissioner and must contain the following: 
    (1) the full name and address (both of residence and place 
of business) of the applicant, and if the applicant is a 
partnership or association, of every member, and the name and 
business address if the applicant is a corporation; 
    (2) the county and municipality, with street and number, if 
any, of all currency exchange locations operated by the 
applicant; and 
    (3) the applicant's occupation or profession, for the ten 
years immediately preceding the application; present or previous 
connection with any other currency exchange in this or any other 
state; whether the applicant has ever been convicted of any 
crime; and the nature of the applicant's occupancy of the 
premises to be licensed; and if the applicant is a partnership 
or a corporation, the information specified in this paragraph 
must be supplied for each partner and each officer and director 
of the corporation.  If the applicant is a partnership or a 
nonpublicly held corporation, the information specified in this 
paragraph must be required of each partner and each officer, 
director, and stockholders owing in excess of ten percent of the 
corporate stock of the corporation.  
    (b) The application shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable 
fee of $250 for the review of the initial application.  Upon 
approval by the commissioner, an additional license fee of $50 
must be paid by the applicant as an annual license fee for the 
remainder of the calendar year.  An annual license fee of $50 is 
due for each subsequent calendar year of operation upon 
submission of a license renewal application on or before 
December 1.  Fees must be deposited in the state treasury and 
credited to the general fund.  Upon payment of the required 
annual license fee, the commissioner shall issue a license for 
the year beginning January 1. 
    Sec. 4.  [53A.04] [APPROVAL OR DENIAL OF AN APPLICATION.] 
    The commissioner shall approve or deny an application 
within 30 days from the completed filing of it.  If the 
application is denied, the commissioner shall send by mail 
notice of the denial and the reason for the denial to the 
applicant at the address contained in the application.  If an 
application is denied, the applicant may, within 30 days of 
receiving the notice of a denial, request a contested case 
hearing pursuant to chapter 14.  
    Sec. 5.  [53A.05] [CHANGE OF NAME OR LOCATION.] 
    If a licensee proposes to change the name or location of 
any or all of its currency exchanges, or adds a new currency 
exchange location, the licensee shall file an application for 
approval of the change with the commissioner.  If the change is 
approved by the commissioner, the commissioner shall issue an 
amended license in the licensee's new name or location.  A $50 
fee must be paid for the amended license. 
    Sec. 6.  [53A.06] [FINE, SUSPENSION, OR REVOCATION OF 
LICENSE.] 
    (a) The commissioner may suspend or revoke any license 
under section 45.027 if the commissioner finds that: 
    (1) the licensee has failed to pay the annual license fee 
or to maintain in effect the required bond or to comply with any 
order, decision, or finding of the commissioner under this act; 
    (2) the licensee, or any officer or director of a corporate 
licensee, has violated any provision of this act or any rule or 
order of the commissioner under this chapter or chapter 45; 
    (3) the licensee, or any officer or director of a corporate 
licensee, has violated any other law which would indicate that 
the person is untrustworthy or not qualified to operate a 
currency exchange; or 
    (4) any fact or condition exists which, if it had existed 
at the time of the original or renewal application for the 
license, would have warranted the commissioner refusing the 
issuance of the license.  
    (b) A license may not be revoked until the licensee has had 
notice of a hearing pursuant to the provisions of chapter 14. 
    (c) A licensee may surrender any license by delivery to the 
commissioner.  The surrender does not affect the licensee's 
civil or criminal liability for acts committed before the 
surrender, or affect the liability on the bond required by this 
act or entitle the licensee to a return of any part of any 
license fee. 
    (d) Before suspension or revocation of the license, the 
commissioner may fine a licensee for violations of this act as 
authorized under chapter 45. 
    Sec. 7.  [53A.07] [FILING OF FEES; UNREASONABLE FEES.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [APPROVAL OF FEES.] Fees charged at each 
location for check cashing services must be filed with and 
approved by the commissioner.  
    Subd. 2.  [AMENDMENT OF FEES.] A licensee may amend its 
fees at any time by filing the proposed amendments with the 
commissioner.  The application for amendment shall be in 
writing, under oath, and in the form prescribed by the 
commissioner.  A fee of $50 shall accompany the application.  
The commissioner shall approve or deny the application 60 days 
after the filing of a complete application to amend its fees. 
    Subd. 3.  [STANDARDS; UNREASONABLE FEES PROHIBITED.] The 
commissioner may disapprove the fees filed by a currency 
exchange if they are not fair and reasonable.  In determining 
whether a fee is fair and reasonable, the commissioner shall 
take into consideration: 
    (1) rates charged in the past for cashing of checks by 
those persons and organizations providing check cashing services 
in the state of Minnesota; 
    (2) the income, cost, and experience of the operations of 
currency exchanges existing prior to this enactment or in other 
states under similar conditions or regulations; 
    (3) the amount of risk involved in the type of check to be 
cashed and the location where the currency exchange operates; 
    (4) the general cost of doing business, insurance costs, 
security costs, banking fees, and other costs associated with 
the operations of the particular currency exchange; 
    (5) a reasonable profit for a currency exchange operation; 
and 
    (6) any other matter the commissioner deems appropriate. 
The commissioner shall set a separate rate, consistent with the 
above standards, for checks issued by a government entity in an 
amount up to $500 to be cashed by a currency exchange. 
    Sec. 8.  [53A.08] [BOND.] 
    Any currency exchange that engages in the sale of money 
orders or travelers' checks shall comply with bonding 
requirements pursuant to section 48.151. 
    Sec. 9.  [53A.09] [POWERS; LIMITATIONS; PROHIBITIONS.] 
    A currency exchange may not accept money or currency for 
deposit, or act as bailee or agent for persons, firms, 
partnerships, associations, or corporations to hold money or 
currency in escrow for others for any purpose.  However, a 
currency exchange may act as agent for the issuer of money 
orders or travelers' checks. 
    Sec. 10.  [53A.10] [VIOLATIONS.] 
    Any person, firm, association, partnership, or corporation 
that violates this act shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. 
    Sec. 11.  [53A.11] [BOOKS OF ACCOUNT; ANNUAL REPORT.] 
    The licensee shall keep and use in the licensee's business 
the books, accounts, and records that will enable the 
commissioner to determine whether the licensee is complying with 
the provisions of this act and with the rules adopted by the 
commissioner.  A licensee shall preserve the books, accounts, 
and records for at least two years after making the final entry. 
    Sec. 12.  [53A.12] [RULES.] 
    The commissioner may adopt rules under chapter 14 as may be 
necessary to administer and enforce this chapter. 
    Sec. 13.  [53A.13] [FEE NOTICE; FALSE ADVERTISING; 
PENALTY.] 
    Subdivision 1.  [FEE NOTICE.] The fees charged by currency 
exchanges for rendering any service authorized by this act must 
be prominently displayed on the premises of the currency 
exchange in the fashion required by the commissioner. 
    Subd. 2.  [FALSE ADVERTISING.] A licensee may not 
advertise, print, display, publish, distribute, or broadcast any 
statement or representation that is false, misleading, or 
deceptive, or that omits material information. 
    Subd. 3.  [CIVIL LIABILITY; PENALTY.] A person who violates 
any subdivision of this chapter is liable to the person damaged 
by the violation for actual damages.  The court may award 
reasonable attorney fees and costs. 
    Sec. 14.  [53A.14] [EFFECT ON LOCAL LAW.] 
    Local law requirements that are inconsistent with the 
requirements in this chapter are preempted to the extent of the 
inconsistency. 
     Sec. 15.  [APPROPRIATION.] 
    $164,000 is appropriated from the general fund to the 
commissioner of commerce to license currency exchanges as 
provided in this act.  
    $90,000 is for fiscal year 1990 and $74,000 is for fiscal 
year 1991. 
    Sec. 16.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
    Sections 1 to 14 are effective August 1, 1989.  Existing 
currency exchanges must submit applications in compliance with 
this chapter by October 1, 1989.  No currency exchange shall 
operate without a license after December 31, 1989. 
    Presented to the governor May 22, 1989 
    Signed by the governor May 23, 1989, 7:11 a.m.