Birmingham City Council Passes New Zoning Regulations for Payday Lending and Title Pawn Businesses
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: John Long
Birmingham, AL – The Birmingham City Council today approved new zoning rules for payday and title lending businesses operating within the city limits. The latest regulations require that new payday and title pawn businesses operate at least 2,000 feet from existing operations of comparable industry.
The new zoning rules are in response to the issue of “clustering” of these types of businesses.
“Today’s resolution was good for the citizens of Birmingham as well as the business community whose desire is to relocate into a progressive market without the inundation of predatory lending agencies,” said Councilwoman Lashunda Scales, who brought forth the original ordinance.
“By the Council’s passage of today’s zoning restrictions, we can reduce the number of payday and title pawn businesses in neighborhoods that are in dire need of community and economic development infrastructure,” Scales said.
A moratorium restricting the issuance of new licenses to businesses categorized as “payday loan and title lending” was passed last Tuesday. The moratorium extension expires in June of next year, but has been sustained for over two years. A public hearing on the ordinance was also held last Tuesday.
Implementing zoning restrictions is the most the City can do to address the proliferation of these types of businesses, which Councilor Scales believes hinder economic development. City officials plan on petitioning the state legislature to introduce further legislation during the 2014 session.