Springfield pastor seeking local support for payday lending bill


A Springfield pastor is seeking support from other local faith leaders on a bill that would change payday lending laws in Ohio, an industry he says harms the working poor.

Central Christian Church Pastor Carl Ruby is drumming up local support for payday lending legislation, which is expected to be released next month. He’s already received support from both faith leaders and community members for the Ohio Coalition of Faith Leaders for Lending Reform, he said.

RELATED: Church leaders: Payday loans hurt Springfield

“I’m happy Springfield has taken the lead on this,” Ruby said. “We were really the first city that started organizing and pulling faith leaders together. That’s exciting to me.”

However, the industry won’t go down without a fight, Ruby said. “There will be lots of pushback,” he said.

Industry leaders told the News-Sun last month that proposed changes won’t work for payday lenders in Ohio.

“Our businesses can’t operate under that kind of model,” said Pat Crowley, a spokesman for the Ohio Consumer Lenders Association.

Crowley said his industry charges fees, not interest rates, and said their services help people pay medical bills and buy groceries, or “everyday things that people need to survive.”

One in 10 adults in Ohio, or about 1 million people, have taken out a payday loan, according to a study released last month by the Pew Charitable Trusts, a national consumer protection organization. The national average is 1 out of every 20 people who have used a payday loan, Ruby said.

SOCIAL MEDIA: FOLLOW REPORTER MICHAEL COOPER ON FACEBOOK

“Ohio is kind of a poster state,” he said. “We have the least regulations and the highest per capita loan usage.”

Ruby is asking that rates are fair for borrowers and viable for lenders who operate in good faith, allow reasonable time for repayments and require installment payments of no more than five percent of their monthly income. The proposed legislation will also cover car title and online loans, he said.

Last year, Ruby organized a community forum on payday lending, which included local and state leaders. Springfield has at least 18 loan centers, Ruby said, many clustered together in poorer neighborhoods. Ohio has more than 650 storefronts that offer payday loans, the Pew report says.

MORE: Springfield pastors, state lawmakers look to reform payday lending

Voters approved tougher regulations on the industry, including a 28-percent interest rate ceiling as part of the state’s 2008 Short Term Loan Act. But the report says many businesses have skirted those regulations by operating as credit service organizations, which do not have fee limits.

Fees charged by the payday and car title loan industry cost Ohioans more than $500 million a year, mostly affecting residents who are already struggling financially, according to a Center for Responsible Lending report released in 2015.

In Ohio, it costs about $680 to borrow $300 for five months, the Pew report says. In Colorado, residents would pay $172.

It typically takes about one-third of a person’s income to pay back a loan each month in Ohio, Ruby said.

FIVE QUICK SPRINGFIELD READS

Ohio Auditor: Springfield under fiscal stress

$4.5M in federal money to be spent on Springfield streets

More candidates consider Springfield commission run

2016 SPECIAL PROJECT: Healthy Springfield

Store to close mall location, move to Bechtle Avenue



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

One dead after vehicle crash in Clinton Co.
One dead after vehicle crash in Clinton Co.

One person has died after a vehicle crash in Wilmington Sunday, OSP Wilmington Post Sgt. Jeremy Grillot confirmed. Crews were dispatched to Airborne Road, about one-half mile east of State Route 134 around 10:30 a.m. Initial scanner traffic indicated that there were people ejected and entrapped, but that has not been confirmed. It’s not clear...
Some Ritz products recalled for potential salmonella presence
Some Ritz products recalled for potential salmonella presence

Some Ritz products are being voluntarily recalled due to the potential presence of salmonella. Mondelez Global LLC announced the voluntary recall in the United States, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands Saturday. >> Read more trending news  The affected products are some Ritz Cracker Sandwiches and Ritz Bits products. According...
Chrissy Teigen shares sweet video of son Miles smiling & kicking his feet: 'This little dude'
Chrissy Teigen shares sweet video of son Miles smiling & kicking his feet: 'This little dude'

Looks like Chrissy Teigen might have a future soccer player on her hands! Teigen, 32, shared a sweet video of her 9-week-old son Miles Theodore on Saturday, as her baby boy lounged on his back while smiling and kicking his feet. “The little guy,” she captioned the adorable — but sound-less — social media clip...
Tony Sparano, former Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders head coach, dead at 56
Tony Sparano, former Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders head coach, dead at 56

Offensive line coach for the Minnesota Vikings Tony Sparano died Sunday morning at age 56. The Vikings said in a statement Sunday that Sparano died unexpectedly. >> Read more trending news  Before coaching with the Vikings, Sparano was the head coach for the Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders. He started his NFL career in 1999 as an...
Rapper Offset posts bail, reunites with wife Cardi B after arrest for weapon, drug charges
Rapper Offset posts bail, reunites with wife Cardi B after arrest for weapon, drug charges

Migos rapper Offset came home Saturday after he was arrested on suspicion of drug and weapon charges Friday. WSB reported the 25-year-old and his bodyguard, Senay Gezahgn, were traveling in Jonesboro, Georgia, when police pulled over Offset for an improper lane change. Offset, whose real name is Kiari Cephus, was driving a 2014 Porsche 911...
More Stories