Stop a New Predatory Loan Product – Oppose HB 1913

HB 1913 (Rep. Kannady/Sen. Leewright), the Oklahoma Small Loan Act, would create a new predatory loan product in Oklahoma, known as a Small Loan. These loans would allow interest to be charged at an annual rate of over 200 percent, which is far costlier than what can be charged under current law. These loans would be available in addition to payday loans and other short-term loan products.

Protecting consumers from dangerous financial products is a long-standing role of state government. HB 1913 would overturn existing rate caps on loans of this size and put the financial health of economically vulnerable Oklahomans at greater risk. There is simply no need in Oklahoma for another high-cost predatory loan product designed to trap people in unaffordable debt.

Where Things Stand (as of 5/5/17)

UPDATE: Gov. Fallin vetoed HB 1913 on May 5th. Thank you to everyone who contacted the Governor on this issue! Click here for OK Policy’s statement.

HB 1913 passed the House of Representatives on a 59-31 vote on March 13th and passed the Senate on a 28-16 vote on April 27th. You can see how your Representative voted here and how your Senator voted here. Click here to see OK Policy’s statement expressing disappointment at the bill’s passage.

Talking Points

Download the talking points as a fact sheet

Oklahomans are already drowning in a sea of debt

  • In 2014, Oklahomans took out nearly 950,000 payday loans and over 1.2 million “B” loans.
  • That’s 77 consumer loan for every 100 adult Oklahomans.
  • Our residents are already deeply in debt, and adding a new higher-cost product to the marketplace will only put more Oklahomans at financial risk.

HB 1913 substantially increases the cost of credit for many Oklahomans

  • This bill would allow lenders to charge interest more than 4 times higher for an installment loan than what is allowed under current Oklahoma law.
  • Under current law, lenders can charge up to $450 in fees for a loan of $1500. Under HB 1913, that same loan would come with interest charges of up to $2,108 – more than four times as much.
  • See our Cost Comparison for for a direct comparison of loans under current law and loans propsed by HB 1913

HB 1913 will push people into public assistance

  • This bill would not require lenders to verify the borrower’s ability to repay the loan, so it’s likely that loans will be made to individuals who cannot afford the monthly payments.
  • When the borrower can’t repay the loan, the lender offers a second loan to pay down the first loan. Borrowers are then trapped in a cycle of new loans to pay old loans, and when they can’t keep up and they face financial collapse, they seek out public assistance to make ends meet while they recover.
  • This increases the cost of the safety net programs that we all pay for.

HB 1913 only benefits the high-interest lenders who are pushing it

  • HB 1913 effectively subsidizes the predatory loan industry by allowing them to use the courts to collect on loan debt. This bill supports the industry at the expense of Oklahomans.
  • Many organizations strongly oppose this bill, including: AARP, Catholic Charities, Oklahoma Women’s Coalition, Oklahoma Conference of Churches, and Oklahoma Policy Institute.

Leaders of the faith community strongly oppose HB 1913

Personal Testimonies 

Oklahomans throughout the state are being hurt by predatory lending practices. Dozens shared their stories with us.

“When my daughter was born I took out payday loans to keep us afloat and alive. I couldn’t pay the loan back so they suggested I go to another branch and take out another loan to pay off their loan. I was stuck in this cycle for 2 years. When I couldn’t afford to pay they kept trying to take it out of my bank account leading to hundreds of dollars in insufficient funds charges and banged up credit. All of that happened with the restrictions they have now. If they are allowed more flexibility more people will be stuck in this endless cycle!” – Ashley (Oklahoma City)

“I oppose this bill [HB 1913] because I’ve seen what it has done to a widow at my church. It has kept her strapped for money. She has not been able to get ahead because of these companies that charge her ridiculous fees for a small amount of money. I served nearly 21 years in the U.S. Regular and Reserve Army and I know that the military does not allow its service members to use these lenders. If the Army cares enough to protect its service members from such a practice why doesn’t our state government demonstrate the same level of concern for its citizens?” – Davison (Lawton)

Read more personal testimonies from Oklahomans who were victims of predatory lending practices.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Blatt helped found OK Policy in 2008 and became the organization's Executive Director in 2010. David previously served as Director of Public Policy for Community Action Project of Tulsa County and as a budget analyst for the Oklahoma State Senate. He has a Ph.D. in political science from Cornell University and a B.A. from the University of Alberta. David has been selected as Political Scientist of the Year by the Oklahoma Political Science Association, Local Social Justice Champion by the Dan Allen Center for Social Justice, and Public Citizen of the Year by the National Association of Social Workers. He lives in Tulsa with his wife, Patty Hipsher, a special education teacher in Broken Arrow, and their son, Noah.

12 thoughts on “Stop a New Predatory Loan Product – Oppose HB 1913

  1. Senator Marlow and Representative Newton:
    I urge your opposition to HB 1913. By offering the illusion of “quick cash,” but at exorbitant interest rates, this bill would create almost by definition a spiral of debt that underpaid hard-working Oklahomans would be virtually chained to for years, if not in perpetuity. By voting against this legislation and, even more so, working for its defeat within the Republican caucus, you can insure that fairness in our lending system will extend to all Oklahomans regardless of income.

  2. To whom it may concern,

    As a social worker, as a born and raised Oklahoman, please I urge your opposition to HB1913! It will harm the population I serve, and you serve, so much. This will do no good. I pray that you will be able to see that this bill will harm those you have been elected to serve and protect.

    Thank you

  3. Senator Marlow and Representative Newton:

    HB 1913 “The Small Loan” appears to be in the best interests of the lenders only. I am having difficulty envisioning the support of this bill by any legislator in either house.

    Thank you

  4. We need to contact our state senators asap. Please get involved To our state congress people – please look out for the poor. vote no senate

  5. This bill does not in any way help individuals who really need the money. It only allows the small loan businesses another way to drown the poor in more debt. Do not pass this bill. If they go our of business I say great! I know several individuals who have gotten stuck in the small loan cycle and a couple who have lost their cars. Please do not pass HB 1913.
    Thank you

  6. I am opposed to House Bill 1913 becoming law – this is not the right answer to this problem. Over 200% interest is highway robbery and measures should be taken against any business that takes advantage of people, especially those who can least afford such rates. Seems there should be a better way.

  7. Gov Fallin
    As a resident and voter in Oklahoma City, I desperately urge you to Not sign HB 1913. That bill will entrap Oklahomans who are financially in distress and just get them deeper in debt .

    Please uphold your “Oklahoma Standard” by looking out for your fellow citizens and NOT sign HB 1913.

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