Mississippi House votes to extend check-cashing lenders

By Emily Wagster Pettus/The Associated Press

JACKSON — The Mississippi House has voted to let payday lending businesses keep operating in the state beyond 2015.

The bill passed on an 89-21 vote Thursday. It goes to the Senate for more debate.

At a payday lending business, a consumer can get a short-term loan by writing a check that covers the amount being borrowed, plus fees. State law gives consumers 30 days to repay loans, and it caps fees at $20 for every $100 borrowed.

Critics say the companies charge high fees that can trap poor people into a series of debts that are difficult to repay.

Supporters say the businesses provide easy access to cash for people who might not be able to get loans from traditional banks.