Maine Legislative Document 1499, “An Act to Protect Confidential Consumer Records in Self-Service Storage Facilities,” has been passed by the Business Research and Economic Development Committee. The Maine Self Storage Association (MeSSA) has worked with the state legislature to craft and amend this new bill pertaining to the handling of third-party personal records in self-storage.
After a recent review of the bill, the BRED Committee asked MeSSA to work with the Bureau of Consumer Credit Protection to agree on appropriate language for the bill. At the session on Feb. 9, association president Rhonda Hallett Pope answered many questions regarding self-storage operation and leases as well as the association’s stance on the bill. After some senators expressed concern about the bill, amendments were made, after which it passed the committee unanimously. MeSSA expects the bill to pass the House and Senate without further debate.
Among the amendments made to the bill is that it no longer requires self-storage operators to ask customers if they are storing records via their lease. In addition, when a customer defaults and the operator cuts the lock on the tenant’s unit, the operator may inspect the contents to check for personal information without liability. If the operator believes there to be personal information contained in the unit, he can destroy the information without liability. The operator can also ask buyers who find personal information within a unit they have purchased to return it to the operator.