From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh
Child advocates are lining up their legislative priorities for the upcoming session of the Kentucky General Assembly and capping interest rates on payday loans looks like item number one.
Last week, Ohio voters upheld a new state law reducing annual interest rates on payday loans from 391-percent to 28-percent. Payday lenders spent 18-million dollars on a campaign to repeal the law.
The Ohio vote is encouraging to child advocates in Kentucky, who say the industry traps families in a cycle of debt. Terry Brooks of Kentucky Youth Advocates, says there’s little regulation of payday lenders in Kentucky.
“Minimally, we want to make sure we know what’s going on, because right now, no one really does. And certainly there are conversations around caps,” says Brooks.
He says capping payday loans in Kentucky will be a legislative priority for Kentucky Youth Advocates next year. Other priorities include raising the dropout age from 16 to 18 and making sure elementary school children are getting enough physical activity.