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Public Hearing Scheduled For Ohio Payday Loan Reform Bill

HB 123 would close loopholes that payday lenders use to trap borrowers in debt
and thwart will of Ohio voters

COLUMBUS Nov. 27 – Eight months after its introduction, a bi-partisan bill that would reform
Ohio’s worst-in-the-nation payday loan structure will finally receive its first public hearing Nov.
29, at 9:30 a.m., in Room 114 of the Statehouse.

House Bill 123 – co-sponsored by Rep. Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield) and Rep. Michael Ashford (D-
Toledo) – would cut interest rates on payday loans in Ohio to 28% and set a maximum monthly
fee of $20. Ohio voters overwhelmingly approved a rate cap in 2008, but the payday loan
industry – slithering through a loophole – has ignored that vote of the people.

Payday lenders trap Ohioans in debt with unaffordable payments and astronomical annual
percentage rates - 591% typically. A $300 payday loan in Ohio costs a typical trapped borrower
$680 in fees over five months.

The bill’s bi-partisan co-sponsors will be providing testimony.

“I was not sent here to represent (payday loan) businesses that are overwhelmingly owned by
out-of-state entities,” Rep. Koehler said. “I was sent here to represent the citizens of Ohio, who
overwhelmingly support common-sense guidelines that protect the consumers in Ohio who are
working hard to make ends meet.”

Springfield Pastor Carl Ruby, a leader in the Ohioans for Payday Loan Reform coalition, said he
was pleased the bill was moving forward.

“This well-balanced and necessary legislation has been stalled since last spring,” Ruby said. “We are
pleased that it is moving forward for a public hearing, but this good bill still has a long way to
go. Meanwhile, working Ohioans across the state who use these products – many of whom live
paycheck to paycheck – continue to lose $200,000 every day that the legislature keeps this bill from
becoming law.”
“House Bill 123 has been reviewed, studied and examined for eight months by House leadership,” Ruby
said. “The coalition has patiently and respectfully answered all inquiries, including the facilitation of a
meeting between legislators and a group of Ohio borrowers who have been harmed by payday loans. It
is beyond comprehension why any member of the Ohio legislature would not support bringing relief to
their constituents who use these loans, especially since Ohio voters across the state overwhelmingly
approved of these types of reforms.”

An estimated one million Ohioans have used payday loans. Companies charge Ohio residents
four times higher prices than they charge for these loans in other states.

Some members of Ohioans for Payday Loan Reform remain leery about the prospects of a
substitute, watered-down “sham” bill being introduced to replace HB 123. If that happens, it
will be an obvious move to placate the payday loan industry at the expense of Ohioans who use
these products and those who voted in favor of these reforms in 2008.

Ohio House Payday Loan Reform Public Hearing

House Government Accountability and Oversight Committee
9:30 a.m., Nov. 29
Room 114, Statehouse

Contact: Steve Luttner

sluttner@lesiccamper.com
216.696.1966

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