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Thursday, January 07, 2010

Bleeding Heartland: Democrats, please get payday lending reform right

Excerpted from this post at Bleeding Heartland

Key Democratic lawmakers will push for new limits on payday lending
during the Iowa legislature's upcoming session, which starts on
January 12. State Senator Joe Bolkcom, who chairs the Senate Ways and
Means Committee, called for restricting the "loan shark rates" the
industry typically charges. The Iowa Catholic Conference also supports
limiting the interest rate for payday loans to 36 percent. That's
welcome news. Although 36 percent interest is still quite high, it's a
lot better than the 300 to 400 percent interest rates payday lenders
are in effect currently charging customers. In 2007, the Iowa
legislature had smaller Democratic majorities yet managed to pass a
bill capping interest rates on car-title loans at 21 percent. (Former
Governor Tom Vilsack and Attorney General Tom Miller had advocated
that reform for a long time, but Republican leaders refused to allow a
vote in the Iowa House when they controlled the chamber.)

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Mike Schramm
Andy Szal

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