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06/13/2024 04:47 PM
Pennsylvania State Senate
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=S&SPick=20230&cosponId=39058
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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: January 3, 2023 11:19 AM
From: Senator David G. Argall
To: All Senate members
Subject: Fighting Back Against Organized Retail Theft
 
According to the United States Chamber of Commerce, retailers are losing close to a billion dollars in goods across Pennsylvania because of organized retail theft.
 
While large retail stores have been the primary target, 54% of small business owners across Pennsylvania have stated that they have seen an increase in shoplifting within the past year. Coming off the heels of the pandemic, these thefts are a slap in the face of every hardworking Pennsylvanian trying to provide for themselves and their families.
 
On a national scale, the Retail Industry Leaders Association and Buy Safe America Coalition released a report indicating the retail theft has skyrocketed. According to their report, national retail crime results in $125.7 billion in lost economic activity and 658,375 fewer jobs – paying almost $39.3 billion in wages and benefits to workers. Federal and state governments lose nearly $15 billion in personal and business tax revenues – and this doesn’t even include the loss of sales taxes. Philadelphia ranked 9th on the list of top American cities for retail crime. 
 
In order to fight back against these criminals who are robbing Pennsylvanians of their livelihoods, I am introducing legislation to establish a Deputy Attorney General within the Attorney General’s Office whose job it will be to oversee a team of prosecutors who will be geographically placed throughout Pennsylvania to prosecute retail theft. 

This legislation will also lower the current monetary thresholds for retail thefts in regards to felonies committed in the second and third degrees. 
 
Similar legislation has been championed in Delaware, Michigan, and Illinois.
 
Please join me in supporting this important legislation.



Introduced as SB596