Ballot Issues: No On Amendment U, Yes On Initiated Measure 21 [OPINION]
There are two proposals on the November ballot dealing with the pay day loan industry.
I am voting YES on Initiated Measure 21. It places a 36% cap on interest rates for pay day loans. It was created by political opposites, Steve Hickey, Republican, and Steve Hildebrand, Democrat. It is in response to the countless horror stories of people getting further into debt, not getting out of it, when they access a pay day loan. Interest rates of 500 to 600 percent are common. It is considered by most people, loan sharking. Initiated Measure 21 sets the maximum interest rate at 36%. Currently, pay day lenders are NOT regulated, there is no transparency of ownership, and rolling over loans to push the borrower further into debt is a common practice. Initiated Measure 21 protects consumers from bad actors. It is worthy of your support.
I am voting NO on Amendment U. This proposal was created by the Pay Day loan Industry. It protects them from interest caps and transparency. It would place them in the State Constitution. No other business sector has a special section in the Constitution. Pay Day loan people will tell you their proposal caps rates at 18%. That is not true. The cap is not a firm one. All it takes to increase the rate is the signature of a borrower, desperate to get money NOW to explode the rate to 500% or more. It keeps the desperate person poor and will no doubt increase their desperation. This is a bad proposal.
The Secretary of State has created a ballot issue pamphlet, with explanations by the Attorney General, proponents and opponents: It can be accessed here.
Last week I offered my thoughts on three other ballot issues.
Referred Law 19 (Restricting Ballot Access): I am voting NO.
Referred Law 20 (Sub Minimum Wage for Teens): I am voting NO.
Constitutional Amendment R (Tech School Governance): I am voting YES.