Payday lending

Photo of the committee hearing room
Karen Kasler / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A bill to crack down on payday lending passed an Ohio House committee without any changes – a week after the House speaker resigned and a vote on it was halted. 

Rep. Cliff Rosenberger
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger's resignation is now effective immediately. Rosenberger had previously announced he would stay on the job until May 1. Rosenberger is still maintaining his innocence in the face of an FBI inquiry.

The FBI is said to be interested in Rosenberger’s international travel last year with some lobbyists connected to payday lending. 

House committee meets to discuss payday lending reform bill, HB123, as Rep. Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield) presents his proposed changes.
Andy Chow / Statehouse News Bureau

Ohio House Republicans balked at passing a bill to reform the payday lending industry just hours after the top Republican leader stepped down amid an FBI inquiry. Sources suggest that inquiry is tied to inappropriate contact with payday lobbyists. The bill was slated for a vote before some House leaders slammed on the brakes.

Photo of State Representative Kirk Schuring
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The march towards reforming Ohio’s payday lending industry has experienced several shifts in momentum. Now, as it seems like the issue had stalled again, the Republican House speaker is calling in his ace to recommend changes in the bill. 

The current bill would cap payday lending interest at 28 percent. Republican Rep. Kirk Schuring of Stark County is recommending a move away from strict caps, saying they could lead to shutdowns of payday storefronts.

Photo of advocates for Payday lending reform
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A group is taking another swing at getting an issue on the ballot that would cap payday loan interest rates. The initiative was delayed after the attorney general’s office rejected the first set of petitions. 

Ohioans for Payday Loan Reform say they’ve looked over all the comments provided by the attorney general’s office and they’re confident that their revised petition language will be accepted.