Fresno Bee: Another Editorial Board Against Predatory Payday Lending

payday lender vultures

The California Reinvestment Coalition was happy to read the Fresno Bee’s editorial about an ordinance to restrict payday lending in Fresno: Fresno should regulate new payday loan shops.

The editorial explains that Fresno’s City Council will consider zoning ordinances and land use regulations for new payday lenders later this week.

Councilmember Oliver Baines is advocating that Fresno establish rules that would include requiring a conditional use permit before a payday lender could open, and requiring a minimum distance of a quarter mile from other payday lenders.

Councilmember Baines points out that 90% of the lenders are from either other parts of the state, or not even California companies, meaning the profits from the companies are not reinvested in Fresno’s economy.  This net economic loss totaled $3.6 million in 2011, according to research by the Insight Center for Community Economic Development.

In CRC’s 2013 report, “Down in the Valley: Financial Neglect in Rural California”, we found that the San Joaquin Valley has a whopping 140 check cashing and payday stores per 100,000 households compared to only 51 bank branches per 100,000.

In light of the California legislature’s inaction on payday lending reform, CRC has worked with city leaders in a number of cities across California to implement payday lending reforms, including Fresno, with recent successes in Sunnyvale and Long Beach.

A resolution and ordinance proposal will be heard by Fresno City Council on Thursday morning.

Last night the Gilroy City Council unanimously voted to move forward with developing a permanent ordinance, as well.

A final vote will take place in 2014 for both Gilroy and Fresno.

Are you a Californian who has used a payday loan and would like to share your story? Do you want to get involved in local efforts to restrict payday lending in our communities? If so, please contact Liana Molina, CRC’s Payday Campaign Organizer: Liana@calreinvest.org  or 415-864-3980.

To stay up to date on financial justice issues in California, especially as they relate to low income communities, and communities of color, you can follow the California Reinvestment Coalition on our Facebook page, via TwitterGoogle+, watch our movies on our YouTube Channelsign up to receive our newsletter and action alerts, and of course, visit our website.

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