09 March 2005

Keep the wolves off EBay!

The only political news worse than this new Ohio law is that the legislature evidently passed it without much consideration whatsoever, most notably to potential unintended consequences. The sponsor of the bill (SB 99) says this:
"We never intended for this to apply to people who sell things on eBay," said state Sen. Larry Mumper, a Marion Republican who was primary author of the bill. "This was to insure that auctioneers were abiding by the established rules and regulations. The bill is flawed. We will amend it and correct the problem before it goes into law."

They'd better!

And the governor who signed it into law in February? Gov. Bob Taft -- someone I used to think was an okay guy -- is just now "asking for a clarification" . . .

And they wonder why consumers are feeling so terribly wronged when they don't read license agreements?

Together with all sane people, (which group evidently doesn't include legislators residing in the Buckeye State), I ask, "WHAT ON EARTH?!?!" In the interest of full disclosure, my brother works for a company whose entire business is run on EBay -- to ask that little mom-and-pop operation to pony up over $50K and take a year off to have everyone "play auctioneer" is ridiculous.

Lesson of the day: Licensing requirements are the real mom-and-pop business killers.

UPDATE: For the actual text of the bill, see here; Sen. Mumper's website is here, and Gov. "what did I just sign" Taft can be reached via this page.

UPDATE 2: Corrected bill id from HB 210 to SB 99 (what was I thinking? :-)

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