NEWS THAT IMPACTS YOUR
Updated June 30, 2012 -- Scroll down to read all stories.
HB213 PASSED IN 2012 SESSION & WHAT IT MEANS
The passing of HB213 (click
here) in the last session was quite an accomplishment.
Basically, it gives those of us in our industry the same rights to
dispose of vehicles that banks and credit unions have had for many
years. That is, banks and credit unions are not required to be
motor vehicle dealers in order to dispose of their vehicles. By
the way, for us, it is practically impossible to obtain such a license
due to the insurance requirements -- no carrier will write insurance for
a title pawn lender. And, even if they do it is incredibly
On the surface and for some this may not
have been a problem, but for many others it was a serious problem.
It came in the form of a requirement that you have a motor vehicle
license when applying for a county pawn license. And it also came
in the form of visits by the local country revenue collectors who
badgered many of us in the industry by requiring us to obtain a motor
vehicle license and oh, by the way while your at it, to pay for the
years in the past when they did not have a license. Now, we are
free to dispose of vehicles without the requirement to obtain such a
license. It took a while to get this done but we finally managed
to pass it thanks to the effort of our lobbyist Michael Sullivan.
When you see Michael, say "thanks!"
FEDERAL REFORM -- LAW OF THE LAND!
The Senate has just passed the massive new “Dodd-Frank Wall Street
Reform and Consumer Protection Act" and it will become the law of
the land very shortly. The legislation will have a dramatic impact on how we
conduct our business.
Click here to read our frank
assessment and thoughts of what we know about this massive and far
reaching legislation at the moment. The full impact of this massive bill
(over 2,000 pages) will not be known until the
new CFPB agency is in operation and begins to create regulations.
The new agency will most likely appear within the next six months or
so and it may take another year or so before they get into the
Click here to view the CFPB portion of this legislation (400 pages)
that directly impacts us. This is a pdf file and may take a moment to load.
NEW TITLE PAWN
LEGISLATION DRAFTED. March 31,
Click here to see legislation drafted by
Representative Rod Scott. Michael Sullivan, TPCA's lobbyiest, and
Money's lobbyist have worked directly with Rep. Scott. This legislation
will not go anywhere in this session, but certainly has the potential to
come back next year. By the way, the introduction of this
legislation was stopped primarily by our
Borrow Smart relationship with
the Black Caucus. As a result of our Borrow Smart relationship the request was
routed to Michael Sullivan and to Easy Money's lobbyist who has a
close relationship with Rep. Scott. They had discussions with Rep.
Scott about ways this legislator might solve this problem without
We fully understand this legislation
could most likely be "managed" through the normal process in Montgomery.
But the Borrow Smart relationship was brought to this legislator's
attention by his own peers who are very familiar with Borrow Smart before it ever spun out of control. And, it was done so in a positive
way that could only be done by a "consumer based" organization like
Borrow Smart as opposed to the industry. The Borrow Smart relationship in this example is not
unlike a similar experience with a key legislator at the unprecedented
national Alabama Arise assault panel against our industry last fall.
It was the Borrow Smart consumer program that convinced an Alabama Arise
legislative ally, who
sat on the Arise panel, to listen to our side. So, don't ever
think that Borrow Smart is not working. It is working and in ways
you may never know.
ROY HUTCHESON HAS AN IMPORTANT NATIONAL UPDATE
AND OPPORTUNITY FOR US TO MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE!
September 18, 2009.
The American Association of Responsible Auto Lenders (AARAL)
is working hard to protect our interest on a national level. But,
they need our immediate help by supporting a fundraiser for the Ranking
Member of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee --
our own Senator Richard Shelby.
and download a special message from Roy Hutcheson who is a founding
member of TPCA and of AARAL about how you can become involved and help
in this battle and at the same time learn first hand about the issues we
face. This is a pdf file and may take a moment to download to your
NATIONAL LEGISLATION IS INTRODUCED.
March 2, 2009.
As we reported here, two bills were introduced on the same
day last week against our industry. Isn't that
strange? Two bills -- same day - different houses of Congress.
You don't think our adversaries had any input in this do you?
about what our adversaries think about it and then answer that question.
And don't forget the incredible political connections of our "friends"
over at CRL, as you can clearly see
here. That's just one example.
We already know how effective the CRL has been in over 15 states in less
than 18 months. And now, all of this is unfolding on their own
home turf. Remember, they are headquartered in Washington, DC for
a good reason.
Our first thought and comment about this is that it should not come as a
surprise to anyone who visits this site. We have been posting about
this issue for a couple of months (go here
and read more).
Second, we do not have any representation in Washington, at the
moment, and so we must rely on our members and others who have
direct knowledge. We believe we have some incredibly well informed
readers and members and we very much appreciate their responses and
input on this issue. Please continue to reply if you have direct
knowledge about this issue or if you know what others in the industry
(FISCA, CFSA, AARAL, etc.) may be doing or saying. We will not
disclose any names, unless the person providing the information wishes
us to do so.
So, what is the bottom line? In a few short words we will
state the obvious, our situation is clearly worse than it was one week
ago! How much worse? From our members responses, it
is not clear. But at the moment, we do not believe the votes are
in the Congress to pass the bills. Please keep in mind, this
situation is very fluid and can change in a moment. This
assessment is from about seven or eight replies from some smart, very
well placed members. Many of us have talked amongst ourselves and
may have developed many scenarios on why or why not these bills may
pass. There are all kind of dynamics that affect this and there
are all kinds of lobbyist working this issue in Washington. So,
for any of us to venture a guess where this may end up is pure
speculation. Maybe it makes you feel better, but that is about the
only value as best we can tell. Speculation is okay if you are on
the floor everyday, but for us out here in the hinterlands, it is futile
and probably useless -- expect for the moment and the associated "feel
There is one thing that we are quite sure of, though. This makes
our move to launch a national initiative even more compelling. Our
belief is that our local groups (TPCA, Modern Financial, Borrow Smart
and even individual local companies) alone can not make any serious
impact on this issue. At the moment, we must rely on and
believe that others are working as hard and as smart as they possibly
can in Washington to save us. Our plan is to launch an effort that
will not duplicate anything they are doing. It will be designed to
support their effort with a well coordinated, professional grass-roots
initiative not unlike the same effort that went into the very successful
Borrow Smart program launched over a year ago by payday and title
lenders in our state -- except this will be a national effort. There are plenty of lobbyist in Washington
DC and we hope to provide them with valuable tools that will work to the
benefit of all of us. In doing so, we will partner with them for
feedback on steps we can take in our home states to further our cause in
coordination with their efforts. More on that later.
In the meantime, check here often. We will keep you all posted on
any new developments as soon as we hear of them.
A NATIONAL UPDATE.
February 8, 2009.
The report that we passed along
here at the national page is really all
that we know for a fact -- at the moment. But, for our members we
want you to know that we are working hard on this issue. It is not
a passive project. Our goal, as we stated previously, is to
establish a national effort. We have held several meetings with
industry groups from Mississippi and Tennessee and had discussions with
other states and we believe we are very close to announcing a plan of
action. That plan will be launched through our affiliate
organization at The Council For Fair Lending. It will be a national effort with a
national focus. That is all we can tell you at the moment.
It will be at least a couple of weeks before we are ready to make any
announcement, but you will be one of the first to know.
In the meantime, from what we can gather at the moment we don't believe
ANYONE knows where this might end up. The general thought is
that the 36% cap will not be passed this year, but something that might
have a major impact on our industry will most likely be introduced in
the next thirty to sixty days. We don't know what that will be and we
don't believe anyone else does with any degree of accuracy, either.
Frankly, this is all we know for the moment. As this is written,
we believe anyone who tells you they know with 100% certainty what is
coming down is either badly misinformed or does not have a clue.
Stay tuned and check back here often. We will keep you abreast of
information as it is learned.
WACHOVIA CLOSES ACCOUNTS.
December 1, 2008.
A TPCA member has reported that Wachovia is closing 30 of
their bank accounts. They have given our member until January 31
to find another bank. We first reported on this problem at another site almost
four years ago (click
here). We no longer update the site, but it will give you
background information on the issues. If you know of anyone who
has had success in reversing Wachovia's decision, please
drop us an
email or call (205-733-9926). For some strange reason, I don't
expect any replies.
EZ CORP ANNOUNCES NEW TITLE LOAN PRODUCT.
December 1, 2008.
Corp, a publicly held pawn and financial services company, has
announced their entry into the title lending business. This is
interesting because anyone who has been in the business for more than a
few years may remember they fought against title lending aggressively
for many years. You can
here to read a summary of the report or
click here to read the full report which is included in their
financial analyst conference call announcing their quarterly earnings.
LEGISLATIVE REPORT FOR WEEK ENDING MAY 3rd.
May 3, 2008. Here is Michael's legislative report from last week. No
change, but if you make consumer loans there is a new bill you may want
to look into.
Click here for the report.
TITLE PAWN LAWSUIT ISSUE.
May 1, 2008. Our TPCA attorney, Jeff Ingram, has alerted us to a potential
issue as it relates to bankruptcy filings and possible lawsuits.
Click here to read his update.
GOOD NEWS, AS IN LEGISLATIVE NEWS.
April 28, 2008.
Go to the Legislative section and read
a full report or
click hear and read Michael's summary from last week. As you
can see from Michael's report the last legislative threat of this
session, Senator Barron's bill, is projected to die.
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE FOR WEEK ENDING APRIL 19th.
April 21, 2008. It turns out nothing has changed since the last two weekly
reports. That is good. You may be thinking these reports are
starting to sound like a broken record. You may be right. We
sure hope so.
Here is Michael's report from last week. This session is winding
down and the likelihood becomes less and less with each passing
legislative day (two of which occur this week) that Senator Barron's bill will come out of the
Senate this session. If anything breaks this week, we will
notify you immediately.
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE FOR WEEK ENDING APRIL 13th.
April 13, 2008. Again, we are pleased to report there was no action on our
issues in the legislature last week. But, as we have been
reporting for several weeks, we fully expect Senator Barron's bill to
begin making its movements very soon. And when it does, it has
high likelihood of being passed out of the Senate. To read
Michael's report from last week
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE FOR WEEK ENDING APRIL 5th.
April 7, 2008. There was no new action in the legislature last week that
would effect us. This week we anticipate Senator Barron will hold
a press conference to announce his new payday legislation.
Actually, we expected it last week, but it never happened. Through
our Borrow Smart
affiliate we will attend the press conference and will make a public
statement and distribute a press release after Senator Barron's press
click here (or
here) to read Michael's full legislative report from last week.
NEW PAYDAY LOAN LEGISLATION WAS INTRODUCED
March 27, 2008. New payday lending legislation was introduced today by
Senator Lowell Barron. As we indicated in the last report, this
legislation was expected. You can find a full copy of the bill
Below is a brief summary of the more significant points in the proposed
A 24 hour right of recession
A new extended payment option
Ban on certain military lending
A discount/rebate for early payment (within ten days)
A prohibition against targeting those on fixed income
We do not have much more to report on the legislation at the moment
except to say that we believe that Senator Barron, who is chairman of
the rules committee, does plan to work the bill through the Senate.
Michael Sullivan will work with Senator Barron and others for the
best possible outcome.
LEGISLATIVE REPORT FROM WEEK ENDING MARCH 15th.
March 17, 2008. To sum it up quickly, nothing has happened since the last
report. We last reported that we expected payday legislation from
Senator Barron. For several reasons that has not happened.
We still rate it as likely this session -- at the moment.
Each passing legislative day makes it less likely, though.
So, where do we stand in the session? For the most part, pretty
well -- at least today. The legislature is out
this week and will reconvene again on March 25th. That will place
us at the half-way point of the session. If we get past the first
couple of weeks in April, we will have dodged the bullet for another
year. "Dodged the bullet" is probably not a good choice of words.
A better choice might be a lot of hard work on the part of Michael
Sullivan and all the planning and effort (including Borrow Smart) that
went on well ahead of this session. If you look around us it is
pretty obvious when you see where we stand relative to other states.
States like, VA, OH, CO, VT, DC & AR who all are under major attacks and
are on the loosing side or very close to it. Think back now to the
dollars we spent on lobbying, on hosting and sponsoring events and to
our very successful Borrow Smart program. We are now seeing
returns on our investment. Clearly, these efforts are paying
It is, however, not over yet. We still have plenty of legislative
days for things to go south. We will be watching and will keep you
LEGISLATIVE REPORT FROM MARCH 1st.
March 3, 2008. We have reports that Senator Barron may be ready to introduce
legislation to "reform" the Deferred Deposit Act. Until we see the
legislation we cannot be sure what it may contain. We believe it
may be similar to his effort last year. We will advise as soon as
more information is available.
The other big news, of course, was the recent report that State Banking would pull their proposed legislation.
As mentioned above, we know there are others in the legislature who are interested in
introducing legislation, but so far they have not surfaced. By the
way, we are about one-third of the way into the session so there is
still plenty of time for something to happen. Of course the deeper
we get into the session, the "safer" we become. Although the session
ends officially around mid to late May, by about the first of May any
new legislation introduced has almost zero chance of passing.
Clearly, we are faring much better than some of our peer states.
See these stories,
NH for the bigger picture. That is in addition to OR, PA and
DC that all went away last year. Clearly our industry is under a
frontal assault. Although these attacks are, for the most part,
payday lending many of the above already disallow title lending and it
should be very obvious that title lending would follow close on any
payday ban. That's why we must stand together and fight to
preserve our businesses on very front.
STATE BANKING WITHDRAWS LEGISLATION.
February 20, 2008. Scott Corscadden advised the Title Pawn Council of Alabama (TPCA)
yesterday that they plan to withdraw their proposed legislation -- pawn
and title pawn legislation. We also believe it includes the
deferred deposit proposed changes as well. This came as a
surprise. We have met twice with the Superintendent and with
Scott. At the last meeting we presented a proposal that if they
would drop the legislation we would negotiate with them and work toward
the goal of introducing legislation next year jointly with State
Frankly, we suspect the reason for their decision is they were just not
able to find support for this legislation. By support, we mean
finding someone to sponsor the bills. If true, this is just
another good example of the relationship we have with the key leaders.
Thanks to Michael Sullivan and the others who have worked very hard on
Over the course of the next few weeks we (TPCA) need to decide what our
next step might be and begin planning for next year. We believe
there are some changes that may be needed. The board will work on
this and get back to you all soon.
By the way, this does not mean there may not be other legislation
introduced against us this session by any means. Just that it will
not be State Banking.
TPCA MEETS WITH STATE BANKING.
February 1, 2008. Representatives of the Title Pawn Council of Alabama (TPCA)
met yesterday with the State Banking Department to discuss their
proposed title pawn legislation.
Here is a link to their proposed legislation and
here is a link to the full
report of our meeting. Be sure you spend the time review this
SUMMARY OF BILLS PROPOSED BY STATE BANKING.
January 22, 2008. We have obtained a copy of a letter in which State Banking
summarizes the changes they want to impose on the industry. They
have sent this legislation to several legislators and are actively
looking for a sponsor. This is not a pretty picture!
it here. After you open the document and if you wish to print
it, use the print icon in the upper right corner of the web page.
The regular Internet Explorer print button does not do the trick.
UPDATE January 24th:
We were told by Scott Corscadden that State Banking was willing to talk
with us before sending over legislation. So much for that
commitment from Mr. Corscadden! Further, we
letter which they received almost a week ago. So far -- no
response at all.
THE LATEST ON THE STATE BANKING TITLE LENDING
January 21, 2008. We previously reported on title
lending legislation that State Banking is proposing (see below on
January 2nd). It is terrible
legislation. Last week we sent Scott Corscadden
requesting a meeting with him and the Superintendent, Mr. Jack Harrison.
As of this report, we have not heard back from Scott about our request.
The purpose of our meeting will be to determine why they are doing this
and why now. We met with Mr. Harrison last year and he
emphatically told us that the purpose of his department was to support
and enforce the statutes passed by the legislature. This action
clearly goes well beyond that effort. We want to know what has
changed since then!
When have more concrete information, we will hold a conference call for
our members to discuss this situation in detail and to answer any
questions you may have. We expect this to be within the next ten
days. In the meantime, if you have not already read
report from CFL regarding the 08 outlook, you may want to check it
UPDATE: We have just learned that State Banking has
forwarded their package of legislative proposals to each of the
committee chairs in the house and senate. They are Representative
Mike Hill and Senator Bobby Singleton respectively.
INDUSTRY GETS COVERAGE IN
January 21, 2008. The media reports as a result of
Alabama continue to come in.
is the latest from an article in the Decatur Daily.
INDUSTRY GETS POSITIVE TV COVERAGE IN
January 7, 2008. Most often when we see something on TV or in the paper about
title or payday lending it is terribly bad. Go to
www.councilforfairlending.com and click on the Media Report button
in the middle of the page to see what one local TV station in Birmingham
has to say about us. Based on the article below, we may need much
more of this in the upcoming legislative session!
LEGISLATION ON THE HORIZON -- IMPORTANT UPDATE!
January 2, 2008.
We discovered just before Christmas that the State Banking department
plans to propose new legislation for both the pawn and deferred deposit
First, the pawn statute proposal (click
here to read). We sent our members a notice with a very brief
summary of the proposed legislation a week or so ago. We have since spoken with
Scott Corscadden. Scott indicated he wants our input in helping to
craft a final bill. In our previous notice we indicted the
proposed legislation was similar to Mississippi and Tennessee.
That, in fact, was confirmed by Scott. He indicated it was
patterned after the MS legislation which he believes has worked well for
all parties. This proposed legislation is significant and could
have a major impact on how we operate. If both or either the pawn and/or
deferred deposit legislation passes, we believe it would have a very
negative impact on our business.
By the way, we have preached that we don't live in a vacuum in the state
as it relates to what our neighbors do. Well, this is a perfect
example. State Banking went straight to Mississippi for the new
model! I guess the good news is they did not go to Florida!
Second, regarding the deferred deposit changes, State Banking wants to
change the statute to provide for a single state-wide database that
State Banking essentially controls.
We plan on meeting with State Banking officials in the weeks ahead and
before the next session begins to discuss these issues in much greater
detail. At the present, we plan to work directly with State
Banking to manage this matter and we will keep all of our members posted
on the status of our meetings.
IS THERE LEGISLATION ON THE HORIZON?
November 26, 2007 The short
answer is we don't see any at the moment. Read through the news
here and over at the CFL site and you can
see we've worked double overtime this year to help preserve our
business. We hope and expect the hard work pays off this year.
This is not to say that legislation may not be introduced, just that we
are not aware of any at the moment. Certainly our situation is not
anything like it was this time last year. And, if and when
something appears on the radar screen we are much better equipped to
deal with it than we ever have been before. Let's all hope we
don't need to use our newfound capabilities. Actually, part of our
newly implemented CFL program is preventive in nature. So, we'll
We will keep you posted of any new developments that
occur, but so far so good!
MEETING WITH SENATE LEADERS.
August 1, 2007. Michael
Sullivan has arranged an extended meeting with the leaders of the Alabama Senate. It turns out this will be a three day golfing trip with
Senators Lowell Barron, Zeb Little, Senate Majority Leader and Hinton Mitchem, President Pro Tem
of the Senate. This will give us plenty of face time
with those who help decide our fate in the Senate!
The trip is sponsored by several members of TPCA and CFL.
Click on the picture below to see who sponsored this event and helped
make it possible.
By the way, this is confidential information for members
only. We should not publicize this event.
STATE OF ALABAMA SETTING UP A NEW ONLINE SYSTEM
FOR AUTO TITLES.
August 1, 2007. We all
know the problems with filing a lien in Alabama. It's manual and
it takes six to eight weeks. Not good! Now comes
the State of Alabama with their new
ETAPS system. At the moment it is only available for Designated
Agents (which excludes us). However, it will be available soon for
non Designated Agents for the purpose of filing liens. This will significantly
reduce the turn-around time from many weeks to just days.
TPCA met last week with the State to discuss how we can
participate in the new system. The State expressed a high level of
interest in working with us to be sure pawnbrokers have a system that
works for them. Through August and September the State will be
working on the development of the new system and they have invited us to
work with them -- which we will do. This new system will not be a
full blown Designated Agent system, but a system primarily for filing liens. The State
also expressed an interest in attending one of our future meetings to
discuss this and to discuss other issues connected with title transfers.
We don't know when the final ETAPS system will be available to us, but
our guess is about six months (maybe less). We will
keep you all informed about this great new service.
SUPREME COURT MAKES DECISION ON WAITES CASE.
6, 2007. Our association attorney,
has informed us that the Alabama Supreme Court has made their decision
regarding the Waites case. You may recall, this is the case that
would have invalidated the pawn statute. The Supreme Court has
reversed the decision which is a big ruling in our favor. We do
not have any further information at this moment. Please check back
here later for more information.
Updated July, 7th --
You can now go
to download the decision. Jeff Ingram indicated there were several
significant issues about this case; 1) It was decided much sooner than
expected, which may be an indication of the merits (an easy decision),
2) There were no dissenters (this is unusual) and 3) there were several
arguments in the case but the only one addressed in the decision was the
standing of the plaintiff which turned the case. Read this
decision. It is good. Jeff and the other attorneys deserve
"big time kudos" for this job! Had the decision gone the other
way, we would have BIG problems on this day.
DECISION. June 20, 2007. Our association attorney,
Galese & Ingram,
has informed us that the Alabama Supreme Court has handed down an
important decision with regard to an arbitration case involving TitleMax
and a wrongful repossession case. This is quite an interesting
case. Issues relating to repossession are probably the single most
common legal issue our members face. Not to have a legally well
drafted arbitration agreement in place on every single customer can
be a very real and serious threat to your business! Read and
download the decision here.
COURT TITLE PAWN CASE UPDATE
18, 2007. Our attorney, Jeff
Ingram, has advised there is nothing new to report on this important
case. Further, he does not expect any decision until much later in
the year. We will keep you posted.
PAYDAY BILL MEETING IN SENATE
COMMITTEE TODAY! May
15, 2007. Read the good news at
the legislative site here.
NEW ACTION ON PAYDAY LENDING
BILLS IN THE SENATE. May 10, 2007.
Michael Sullivan, our TPCA lobbyist, reported yesterday that
the special Senate committee chaired by Sen. Byrne planned to introduce
his legislation next Tuesday to the committee. The main provisions of this
2% rate per month on payday loans
30 maximum term for loan
Maximum of three loans in any twelve month period
Next business day right of rescission
Allow for extended payment with no fees
No rollovers or renewals
Ban on military lending
now learn that Senator Byrne will be the new chancellor of the
two year college system. We hope and expect this may effectively
stop this legislation. We will get you more information after the
committee meets next Tuesday.
HB-769 IS INTRODUCED WITH CHANGES TO THE
May 3, 2007.
the details here at our
legislative page regarding this bill.
SOME GOOD NEWS.
April 12, 2007.
this article from the Wall Street Journal regarding payday lending.
It's good. The news has most definitely improved on many fronts since the
launch of the CFSA campaign.
STATE BANKING SUPERINTENDENT APPEARS ON
ALABAMA PUBLIC TELEVISION.
April 9, 2007. One of our members
alerted us to the appearance by the State Banking Superintendent on
Alabama Public Television a couple of weeks ago. Click
here to see his interview in which he discusses, among other things,
payday lending and title lending.
SESSION NEARING HALF-WAY POINT. April 9, 2007.
The legislature is nearing the half-way
point. They will convene this week, but will be off next week for break.
When they return, the session will be at the half-way point. So far,
there is no additional news to report on the bills that affect us as
described below. For the most part the Senate seems to be bogged down on
internal political issues.
UPDATE ON RECENT BILLS TO SHUT DOWN THE
INDUSTRY. April 2, 2007.
There is no news of any significance to report
on the proposed legislation. A committee has been formed that includes
the Senators who introduced the legislation, the payday and title industry
representatives (which includes us) and consumer group representatives.
The committee has held meetings which are essentially to provide the
Senators with feedback on the impact of their legislation. The focus of
the committee, at the moment, seems to be on the payday legislation. The
committee plans to address the title bill after the payday issues are
resolved. At the moment we do not have any timeframes on when that will
UPDATE ON RECENT BILLS TO SHUT DOWN THE
INDUSTRY. March 24, 2007.
We are working on the
three Senate bills through our lobbyists that would shut down our
industry. There is no news to report (good or bad) at the moment. We
expect to see more activity in the press over the next week or so and we
expect that legislation may be introduced in the House that would be
similar to that in the Senate. Many of you have contacted us wanting to
know if there is anything you can do. The only thing you can do at the
moment is to make sure you are a member of our association. We will soon
need all the support we can muster. Your support will be critical when
the time comes.
BILLS INTRODUCED IN ALABAMA SENATE WILL
SHUT DOWN OUR INDUSTRY!!
March 10, 2007. The Senate introduced
three bills that for all practical purposes will shut down the industry.
To those who have attended our meetings this should come as no surprise.
Your association is working diligently on this situation. We do not have
much to report at the moment. Many of you have asked if we need to begin
contacting our local representatives. The short answer, is not yet. At
the proper time, we will most definitely let you know we are ready to
begin an intense, grass-roots effort to present our side of the story.
Rest assured, we are monitoring and tracking this situation hourly
throughout every day. We will soon get back with more information. Also,
rest assured this is the most significant threat against our industry
since we formed TPCA six years ago!
See the press articles
NEW WEB SITE IN THE MAKING. March 10, 2007.
We are working on a new web site and it should be completed
in the next month or so. There will be many new features and more
information available to our members. For the most part, the new site
will be for TPCA members only through a registration
process. If you are not a member of TPCA, you may want to consider
A NEW LOW COST, LIMITED TIME
INTRODUCTORY TPCA MEMBERSHIP IS NOW AVAILABLE. March 10, 2007.
The Board of Directors has approved a new, limited time introductory rate
for TPCA membership which is substantially lower than our current dues.
for our current dues. This new dues arrangement has not been added to any
other location on this site yet. The annual cost under the new plan is
$350 for your first store and $100 for each additional store up to a
maximum of 10 stores. We will bill this on a quarterly basis. If you are
not member and have never been a member, now is the time to join.
Especially now, with what we are facing! Hurry, though this offer will
expire soon. Drop us an
email or call at
205-733-9926 for more information or to join under this new low rate
TPCA WILL HELP ORGANIZE A
NEW ASSOCIATION TO PROMOTE TRUTH ABOUT THE TITLE AND PAYDAY LENDING
February 11, 2007.
At our meeting on January 31st we discussed
an exciting new concept to promote "good news" about our industry (title
pawn and payday advance). Due the constant attacks by the press in
which the press virtually never, ever bothers to tell the other side of
the story, we all agreed it was time someone spoke out for our
industry. We plan to do this! You will hear much more about this
SUPREME COURT CASE HAS NEW
INTERVENER IN TITLE PAWN LAW SUITE.
January 9, 2007.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has filed
a brief in the Supreme Court case against us.
Here is a link
to their web site. They are an "activist" organization. It is probably
fair to say their agenda is opposed to ours!
January 9, 2007.
The Alabama Senate completed their
organization session today. It did not go as everyone expected
Here is the story. Now that this task is complete, the TPCA Board
of Directors will meet to map out our strategy for this session. This
is shaping up to be a very trying period for us. The session begins in
early March but bills can and most likely will be filed any time between
now and the end of the session.
SENATE ORGANIZATION SESSION
BEGINS THIS WEEK.
January 7, 2007.
The Alabama Senate meets this week to
decide the leadership roles for the next session. The outcome of this
will be very important to our members.
Go here for the story.
BIRMINGHAM NEWS & TV
STATIONS BASH PAYDAY LENDERS AS PREDATORY
December 2, 2006.
A spate of articles appeared this week
bashing payday lenders as predators. Clearly, this is timed to
influence legislation -- both local and national! Read much more about
REGIONS BANK ADOPTS AMSOUTH "BANK CLOSING
November 8, 2006.
We have been advised by the Modern
Financial folks (payday association) of new bank closings. We hate to
say we told you so -- BUT.
See our news article from several
months ago regarding the AmSouth - Regions merger. Actually, we thought
the issue was put to bed at the end of last year, but apparently that is
not the case. Go to the bank closing link on the left and read all
about this problem. This is not a local issue. There have been
hearings in Washington to resolve this problem. We thought those
efforts had paid off and the problem was resolved. That does not now
appear to be the case. This latest round of problems is most likely
linked to the merger of AmSouth and Regions.
If you are contacted by Regions about your
banking account you will have no other choice but to find another bank.
We do not know of anyone who has convinced AmSouth (now Regions) to
change their mind. We suggest you try local community banks. We don't
know if it will work, but it is about your only option. None of the
major banks seem willing to accept new business from our industry. We
will keep you appraised of the situation.
WE MADE OUR CONTRIBUTION
Go here to
see the latest.
WE ARE WAY SHORT OF OUR
to see where we stand and to see those who are standing with
IS THIS A NEW COMPETITOR? (THE STATE
& CREDIT UNIONS)
this article regarding a new approach to payday loans. Looks like
the State and Credit Unions are moving into the business.
JUDGE RULES PAWNSHOP LAW
INVALID October 20, 2006.
As discussed at our meeting in September
(and reported here) this is an
issue the association will deal with and will follow closely. We will
certainly keep our members informed on this important issue. The
Defendant in the case has now filed a motion for appeal, which was fully
expected. The association has agreed to file a brief on behalf of our
members and we expect to do so at the appropriate time. Many have asked
about the timing. You can go
here for a general timeline of the events.
BOARD MEETS -
APPOINTS NEW DIRECTOR
The Board of Directors
met yesterday and appointed Mr. Bob Reich with Community Loans of
America to the Board of Directors. We are excited about having Bob join
us. He has a broad range of experience in the industry which will be a
very important asset as we face multiple challenges in the months
ahead. Community Loans operates in Alabama as Alabama Title Loans and
as US Title Loans. They are one of the largest title loan operators in
the state and in the country. Please join us in welcoming Bob to the
Board of Directors.
The Board also agreed to focus on
positioning the association to meet the challenges ahead by bringing on
new members and expanding the leadership of the association. You will
hear more about this is the weeks ahead.
GREAT AARP STORY
October 12 2006.
This article appeared in a South Carolina
paper. Maybe we are beginning to see more clearly the AARP motives in
attacking us so aggressively. Just what's in it for them?
Read the article and see.
October 11 2006.
At our meeting a few weeks ago many of you
pledged to contribute to the PAC. If you have not already done so,
please get your checks in ASAP. We will post the list
of contributions here in a few days. As you can see from the news
below, we will surely need to help our friends in hopes they will stay
Click here for instructions on making your
JUDGES RULING APPEALED.
October 11 2006.
The defendant in the recent case that
declared the pawn statute invalid has this week filed their intention to
appeal that decision as required by the appeal process. TPCA also plans
to file an appeal on behalf of our members.
US CONGRESS PASSES MILITARY
The US Congress has
passed and sent legislation to the President that shuts down lending to
military personnel and their dependants.
Go here or
our association's attorney assessment and
for Modern Financials (payday association) attorney's
SENATOR BARRON GETS SLAMMED FOR PAYDAY
As we predicted the
press and political candidates are turning up the rhetoric and we are
right in the crosshairs. This will clearly turn out to be a
very bad situation in the next legislative session.
or below and see the latest on Senator Barron.
What They Have To Say About Us
MORE ON SENATOR BARRON'S
PLANS FOR THE INDUSTRY.
For those who do
not know of Senator Barron, he is President Pro Tem of the Senate. That
is the top office in the Senate and one of the most powerful positions
in our government. Senator Barron was key in getting the payday
legislation passed a few years ago. He also had an ownership position
in several payday loan stores. That is HAD. The
news article indicated he has disposed of his interest and is no longer
in the payday loan business. In sum, here is what he wants to do in new
legislation he plans to introduce in March:
Stop payday roll-overs
Set up a single database controlled by
State Banking to monitor payday loans
Establish a cooling off period for
renewal of payday loans
Only one payday loan in a 60 day period
Place title loans under the Small Loan
Act at 24% to 36% APR
All About It Here.
SENATOR LOWELL BARRON PLANS
TITLE & PAYDAY LEGISLATION.
September 14, 2006.
just learned from a front page article appearing in the Huntsville Times
that Senator Barron plans to introduce legislation that will
dramatically effect the title and payday industry! Check back
later and we will have more information.
Here is the article.
JUDGE RULES PAWNSHOP LAW
September 9, 2006.
On August 25th St. Clair County Circuit
Judge Charles Robinson Sr. struck down a provision of the Alabama Pawn
Shop Act in a summary court ruling, saying it violates the Equal
Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.
Click here to download the decision (this is a .pdf file and it may
take a moment to load). We will hold a meeting to discuss this
unprecedented ruling and how it will impact our industry.
Click here for
REGIONS ACQUIRES AMSOUTH
BANK. May 25, 2006.
AmSouth bank has been
acquired by Regions Bank's. Some reports show it as a merger. This is
not good if you have a bank account at Regions. As we reported at length
last year, AmSouth was the main cause of bank discontinuance in our
region. We do not know of any of our members who had an AmSouth bank
account who did not have their account closed. Stated another way,
everyone who had an account at AmSouth had their account closed Many of
those who could not find bank accounts moved to Regions. Oh well.
If you have a problem, click
here and read our
reports from last year. Quite frankly, if you encounter problems with
Regions we do not of know much you can do except to locate another bank.
JUDGE MAY RULE PAWNSHOP ACT INVALID.
18, 2006. A few days ago we sent a notice
regarding a circuit judge in St. Clair county who we expect to rule that
the Alabama Pawnshop Act is invalid. We now have additional
information. The original lawsuit was brought against a title operator
in Pell City, AL. We just discovered the operator is a member of TPCA.
The operator has been in this business for a many years and they operate
by the books. The original lawsuit goes back almost four years. We
understand the judge does not think much of our industry and has not
apparently found a violation of any existing statute. So, this move is
apparently his solution. We are not making this up, promise.
If the judge makes this ruling, it will
most certainly be appealed to the Alabama Supreme Court. This means
between twelve and eighteen months before anything would be decided.
NEW MEMBERS. May
Please join us in welcoming two
new members -- Community Loans of America, one of the largest title
lenders in the country (operating as Alabama Title Loans in Alabama) and
Speedy Cash with several stores in south Alabama. Together these
companies represent 40 new stores who are now members of TPCA. We don't
know how many title stores there are in the state, but we believe there
are between 500 and 600 (there are about 900 total pawnshop licensees,
but many are traditional pawnshops only). With these new members, we
believe well over 50% of the operators in, terms of stores, are members
of TPCA. Why is that important, you ask? There are many good reasons,
but two that come to mind immediately are: 1) We clearly have more clout
in Montgomery (a pretty important reason) and 2) If we can continue to
grow, at some point we will be able to address our dues structure, which
will help all of us.
FROM GEORGIA NEIGHBOR.
On March 25 (see the
article below) we wrote about the situation in Georgia. Thanks to
the hard work of many industry folks nothing happened -- this year.
Our president, Jimmy Wiggins, is close to the situation in Georgia and
reports that this was a major battle. He fully expects the issue to be
on the agenda at the next legislative session.
SB501 WILL BRING BIG
CHANGES FOR TITLE OPERATORS.
March 25, 2006.
Now comes new legislation in the Senate to
monitor our industry with a state-wide database and require us to charge
additional fees for every transaction. We believe this is bad
legislation and we are working against it. Click on
for more information.
NEWS FROM NEIGHBORS.
March 25, 2006.
We have our
own battles here (as noted above). Our industry is under constant
attack. If gone unchecked, the outcome will not be good. Consider just
the states that border Alabama: Florida; title loans were
outlawed years ago -- NO MORE TITLE LOANS IN FLORIDA, Mississippi; among other changes they implemented a few years
ago customers are required to pay a portion of their
principal every month, Tennessee; just this year
implemented changes similar to MS. And now comes Georgia.
Read what the Atlanta Journal has to say about it by clicking
here. The outcome under pending legislation in Georgia could be
like Florida or like Tennessee (let's hope it is TN). Don't
think we are immune in Alabama. This is the reason for your association
and the primary reason we exist. Our number one job is to look after
our interest and to do all we can do to be sure what has happened to our
neighbors does not happen to us here. We need everyone's help in order
to succeed. If you are not a member, please stand with us by
LICENSES MAY NOT BE
There is a glitch in the new internet
license renewal system for pawnbroker and deferred deposit licenses. The
error occurs only if you have multiple licenses. If you used the “back”
button on your browser after you completed your first license
application to then enter another license application the system only
processed the first license. All applications after the first
application were not processed by the system.
Click here to
read the entire article.
MEETING WITH NEW STATE
BANKING HEAD. December 12, 2005. Last week Jimmy, Max
& Michael Sullivan (our lobbyist) met with the new superintendent
of the State Banking Department, Mr. John Harrison.
for Jimmy's report.
REVIEWS SUPREME COURT RULING.
association attorney, Jeff Ingram of Galese and Ingram, has completed
his review of the recent Supreme Court ruling. We have faxed and
emailed his assessment to all members. If you have not received yours,
please drop us an email
(click here) and we will get it out to you right away. His review
is quite interesting and you will not want to miss it.
ALABAMA SUPREME COURT RULES
AGAINST PAYDAY LOAN INDUSTRY.
November 22, 2005.
Alabama Supreme Court ruled on a lawsuit against the payday loan
industry on Friday. This lawsuit has been around for years. It appears
to affect only operators who made loans prior to the deferred deposit
legislation that passed in 2003. We are not yet sure what the impact of
this will be. Our association attorney is researching the issue and we
will get his assessment to our members in the next few days. Click on
the link below to read the story as it appeared in the Birmingham News.
rules against payday loan industry.
VIRGINIA TO GO AFTER PAYDAY LOANS IN NEXT SESSION.
November 17, 2005.
It's just not safe anywhere -- at least without a good association
behind you! We have talked at length how several of our neighboring
states have hit a brick wall with regard to title and payday loans.
Florida did away with title loans and then they hit payday loans with
big changes (none of them good). Georgia outlawed payday loans and now
are trying the same with title loans. Tennessee has just made big
changes in title loans (guess how many changes help the operators?).
And now comes Virginia wanting to eliminate payday loans (like North
Carolina has). Read the story by clicking the link below.
There may be
a message here. If you do not have a strong association
in this industry working for you, you may become TOAST! Make sure you
support your association if you want to have a chance.
wants to pull the plug.
"PLEASE DON'T PUT US OUT OF BUSINESS."
August 1, 2005.
article published today (click link below). This is not looking good!
AJC -- More Title Pawn Hearings
GEORGIA TITLE LOAN PROBLEMS WORSEN
July 27, 2005.
Georgia has turned out to be a
for payday loans, mortgage loans and now maybe title loans! As a result
of an assault by the Atlanta paper (Atlanta Journal Constitution) the
Georgia legislature introduced adverse title pawn legislation in the
last session. It did not pass. BUT, they agreed to hold hearings over
the summer and address title pawn again in the next legislative
session. Now, this may not seem like an Alabama problem, but it could
very easily spill over. Remember the horrible bills introduced by the
Alabama legislature when title pawn was outlawed by our other neighbor
(Florida) a few years ago? That was certainly no coincidence.
Click on the link below to read what Georgia (and maybe us) are up
-- Title Pawn Articles
Hypocrisy & Bias
July 27, 2005.
The Modern Financial
group (payday loan association for Alabama) has advised us there is a
payday scam making the rounds in the state. So far as we know it has
only affected payday loans. But, the group could easily expand into
title loans. Here is the information provided to us by the Modern
A GSA employee has been to many check cashing stores in Alabama and
used more than one social security number. We have a special
investigator for GSA working on this. The names used by the
perpetrators are Keshia Horton and Carla Neal. The following are
stores that have been affected that we ARE AWARE OF; AAA
Between Pay Day, Check N GO, Cash Back, The Money Store, Approved
Cash Advance, 500Fast Cash, United Cash Loans, AmeriLoan, Cash
Advance Plus Paycheck Today, Oneclickcash, Check Into Cash, Easy
Money, Ez Pawn, Cash Mart, Fast Cash, Talking Cash, Advance America,
Cash Advance Plus. The GSA investigator needs our help. They want
to get this message to our members to help identify how many other
locations are involved. This appears to be a ring and they have
stolen thousands of dollars. In order to get Federal help the
amount must be 10,000.00. Otherwise, this puts it back to local
jurisdictions. Please let us know if you have any information about
you have any information, please send an
fax (205-444-9606) with the details. Or you can give Max a call at
205-733-9926. We will get it to the Modern folks right away. We have
been able to help in robberies with our alerts, maybe we can help here