An anti-payday lender group is crying foul after a bill to reform the industry was once again delayed in committee. The coalition says the hesitation from lawmakers only intensifies their drive to put the issue on the November ballot.
Ohio House Republicans balked at passing a bill to reform the payday lending industry just hours after the top Republican leader stepped down amid an FBI inquiry. Sources suggest that inquiry is tied to inappropriate contact with payday lobbyists. The bill was slated for a vote before some House leaders slammed on the brakes.
A battle is brewing over payday lending in Ohio. There are more than 650 storefronts in the state but the industry argues that a new bill threatens to shut them all down. However, consumer advocates say payday lending has been skirting around state law for years to prey on desperate borrowers.
The march towards reforming Ohio’s payday lending industry has experienced several shifts in momentum. Now, as it seems like the issue had stalled again, the Republican house speaker is calling in his ace to recommend changes in the bill.
A group is taking another swing at getting an issue on the ballot that would cap payday loan interest rates. The initiative was delayed after the attorney general’s office rejected the first set of petitions.
A citizens group is trying to put an issue on the ballot that would cap the interest rates of payday loans at 28% without any loopholes. The ballot measure is a reaction to lawmakers not taking any action on a pending bill. House leaders say they’re ready to move forward with that bill.
Advocates pushing for a crackdown on payday lenders are one step closer to getting their reform proposal on the November ballot. The group says they’re tired of waiting on lawmakers to act, so they’re going straight to the voters.