Wisconsin passes payday lending regulations

Fountain Pen nib

Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle took up the pen to reign in payday lending in the state. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

After deliberations of some time, Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle signed the bill that put further regulations on payday lending in Wisconsin.  There are a bevy of new rules regarding Wisconsin payday lenders, but most significant is the outlawing of title loans in the state.  The bill also contained regulatory statutes for other industries, including dairy products and medical transcriptions. Wisconsin joins the ranks of states regulating the payday loan industry, though the regulations aren’t as stringent as other states.

Doyle finally signs Wisconsin payday loan bill

Governor Jim Doyle of Wisconsin has had a bill on his desk awaiting the pen for some time — the bill that concerns payday lenders in his state. He finally signed it, though used the power of partial veto in order to make some changes he felt were needed to the new payday loan law, according to CNBC.  Among the new rules are, according to the BusinessNorth:

  • Loans capped at whichever is the least of $1,500 or 35 percent of monthly income
  • No more than one rollover
  • Database established to prevent borrowing from multiple lenders
  • No lenders within 1,500 feet of each other or 150 feet of certain residential zones

Title loans outlawed

Part of the bill was a ban on car title lending, which is when a lender gives a loan and holds the borrower’s car title as collateral.  The law concerning payday lending in Wisconsin and title loans was passed along with a new budget, which cut expenditures to keep the state afloat.  Though Wisconsin has a nearly $7 billion budget shortfall, taxes were actually cut and $800 million was cut from Medicare alone.  Wisconsin also experienced a drop in its unemployment rate, down to 8.6 percent. Doyle’s use of a  “partial veto” is considered somewhat controversial, as it allows the governor to make alterations to laws he wishes to make, without legislative approval.

Other rules and regulations

Along with the regulations on payday lenders and title lenders, Governor Doyle also vetoed a bill that would have allowed farmers producing raw milk to sell directly to consumers.  He also passed the Wired for Health Act, which allows health care providers to share electronic patient information to prevent duplicate tests and thus lower health costs.

Other recent posts by bryanh