Monday, September 18, 2006

Payday Loan Owner Objects to Cash Advance Criticism, Invites Critics to Store

By J.J. Cameron
Payday Loan Writer

The following is a recent, paraphrased letter The Clarion-Ledger. It was penned by Kevin MacDonald, of Jackson.

I've been in the pawnshop business for almost 17 years in Jackson and have two instant payday loan locations outside Jackson. I tried to open one at a location in Jackson that was zoned properly, but I was denied a use permit because of the "perceived image" of our industry, and that there were too many already.

A request to put a liquor store in with similar problems was granted.

Payday advance lenders and pawnshops are the least of the worries in Jackson. We provide a service to a segment of society - a larger segment than many think. All of us fringe lenders are regulated and audited by the Department of Banking and Consumer Finance and they use a model law as the guideline that was passed by the state Legislature in 1993. It provides strict penalties for those who don't abide by the law.

Payday Loan Stores Logo

Our industries do not compete with banks. The average pawn loan in Mississippi is around $50 and a payday lender's average is around $200. There are only 10 pawnshops in the Jackson city limits and, yes, there are a lot of fast payday loan providers at this time.

There used to be over 30 pawnshops in Jackson and if officials will let the market take care of itself, the number of payday loan locations will adjust over time, just like any business.I would only hope the leaders of Jackson would do as former Sen. "Pud" Graham did in 1992 when we tried to get our pawn industry regulated.

He said he couldn't support the pawnshop bill because he didn't understand the industry. So, after the session was over, he went to pawnshops around the state and educated himself. He helped us pass our bill the next year.

I invite City Council members to visit our stores and see what we do. However, if they do succeed in closing all of us down, I guess I'll send my customers to them for a $50 loan when they need a little gas and groceries till they get paid. We provide a legitimate service to people who need small bad credit payday loans and are way less expensive than a bounced check!

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