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Arson for Profit: Hearing Before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Criminal Justice of the Committee on the Judiciary, September 10, 1980

NCJ Number
Date Published
141 pages
Panels of anti-arson experts, Federal experts, and State and insurance industry officials testify on Federal bill S. 252, the Anti-Arson Act of 1979.
The bill would create a 2-year anti-arson interagency committee of representatives of nine Federal agencies concerned with arson, designed to establish and coordinate prevention, training, detection, and community awareness programs. It also makes arson a part 1 crime in the Uniform Crime Reports compiled and published by the FBI. This means that local police agencies will use a common definition of arson; consider it a major offense; and record the volume, trend, rate, clearance, and profile of persons arrested, rather than merely arrest information recorded for part 2 crimes. The bill will also require applicants who apply for insurance for property in high- risk neighborhoods to enumerate all prior instances within the past 10 years in which property they held was destroyed by fire. Moreover, under certain conditions, insurers will be able to establish procedures to cancel or not renew coverage of any risk eligible under the fair plan upon 5 days notice to any policyholders. All of the witness panels support S. 252 as legislation needed to counter a growing problem. Appended questions and responses as well as additional prepared statements