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House Sends Payday Lending Bill To Kasich

Andy Chow
Rep. Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield) urges support for HB123.

In the final chapter of one of the most surprising twists of the year, the Ohio house has agreed with the Senate’s changes to a payday lending overhaul and sent it to the governor’s office. It was a major shift that changed the fate of the bill.

The bill had no momentum for a year, until former House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger resigned after reports of an FBI probe into his relationship with payday lending lobbyists. Rosenberger has maintained he’s done nothing wrong.

The House and Senate then both passed the bill fairly quickly. 

New House Speaker Ryan Smith was asked if it would’ve passed if not for the Rosenberger investigation.

“I don’t know, I don’t want to speculate on how we got here the point is we just made things a lot better for consumers in Ohio,” says Smith.

The bill, HB123, caps all interest and fees at 60% and sets lower loan payments based on a borrower’s monthly income. No word yet on if Gov. John Kasich will sign it.

A statement from the Ohio Consumer Lenders Association says the bill is an untested, unproven attempt at regulation, adding "Time will show that this legislation is not real reform but an effort to eliminate the existing brick and mortar small dollar loan industry and like ill-conceived attempts of the past, consumers and workers in the industry will be hurt by the implementation of HB 123."

But supporters of the bill have argued against this claim by saying similar measures were implemented in Colorado where many of Ohio's payday lenders also operate.

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