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Pat McCrory 2Raleigh’s News & Observer reports that Gov. McCrory has given a “thumbs down” on the proposal to re-legalize payday lending in North Carolina. Meanwhile over at the General Assembly, there’s no word whether bill sponsor Sen. Jerry Tillman slammed any doors when he heard the news, but reliable reports indicate that the Senator is, shall we say, seriously miffed at the Guv.

Let’s hope McCrory sticks to his position anyway and kills this nutty idea before it goes any further.

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Payday loansThe NC Justice Center reports:

A  new poll released today shows staggeringly low levels of support for a bill that would legalize loans of up to 300 percent in North Carolina. Indeed, nearly three-fourths of North Carolinians say they would be less likely to vote for a legislator that supported the bill.

The poll, conducted by Public Policy Polling, shows that only seven percent of North Carolinians support the push to legalize payday lending in North Carolina, compared with 73 percent who would like to see current lending limits remain intact.

Current law allows interest rates of up to 54 percent, but a new bill, Senate Bill 89, would allow payday lenders to charge an annual percentage rate well above 300 percent.

Significantly, seven out of 10 respondents say that they would oppose the law even if they knew for sure it would create jobs and allow easier access to credit.

The poll has serious implications for lawmakers. Read More

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Payday lending 3It remains difficult to fathom that the leaders in the General Assembly would really want to open the can of worms that is payday lending, but, as we have reported on several occasions here recently, powerful state Senators are indeed advancing a bill to re-legalize the long-banned practice here in North Carolina.

Meanwhile, opposition to the idea continues to surface and grow in numerous places. Here are just a few:

Yesterday, the North Carolina Council of Churches devoted the newest issue of its Raleigh Report to a description of the evils of two-week, triple-digit interest rate loans.

This morning, Read More

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The folks at Progress NC have identified a simple way to end the General Assembly’s absurd attempt to re-legalize predatory, triple-digit interest payday loans in North Carolina: The State’s Governor can simply reiterate the opposition to the industry that he voiced in his 2007 campaign for re-election as Mayor of Charlotte.

This is from a Progress NC release sent out this morning:

RALEIGH – Progress NC today called on Gov. Pat McCrory to speak out against payday lending, a position he’s already taken. A new bill filed in the NC Senate would bring predatory payday lenders back to North Carolina for the first time since 2006. Senate Bill 89 would allow payday lenders to charge interest up to 391% annually. 

In a 2007 mayoral debate, Pat McCrory spoke out against payday lending: Read More

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As they have several times in past years, experts who counsel vulnerable soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines are speaking out against the expansion of predatory lending in North Carolina. Today, the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society sent a letter to the General Assembly in which the group makes clear what a terrible idea it would be to re-legalize “payday” lending as is proposed in recently introduced legislation.

According to the letter (which is signed by the Society’s President, Retired Admiral Steve Abbot):

“The negative impact of payday loans on military readiness is profound, and the harm caused by these loans is significant; exhausting resources that could be used in other ways, and creating unnecessary hardship for military families (and others).” 

Click here to read the entire letter.