In 2013, 4,557 people in the College Station-Bryan Metropolitan Statistical Area visited a Credit Access Business (CAB) and used payday and auto title loans to meet their need for emergency funds. They borrowed $6 million and paid $4 million in fees, according to the Texas Office of Consumer Credit Commissioner.
Payday loans are small cash advances with two-week terms — with interest and fees applied. Payday and auto title loans offered by CABs are made by non-affiliated third-party lenders with the CAB acting as a loan broker guaranteeing the loan. Profit is derived from fees charged for their services. In 2013, the average amount Texans borrowed per loan was $463.
To make matters worse, your last emergency left your bank account dry. You also realize that without a car, you’ll have a hard time getting to work and dropping the kids off at daycare in the morning.
And payday is a week away.
Under this scenario, a payday or auto title loan might be the only option for getting the emergency cash you need. This and similar circumstances create problems for many Texas families because the state does not regulate the terms or conditions of loans from credit access businesses.
This is a live blog from the College Station City Council’s workshop and regular meetings on Thursday, Feb. 27. It’s not the official minutes.
Both meetings are being broadcast live on Suddenlink Channel 19 and can also be watched online. An archive of previous council meetings is available on the website.
The workshop has started.
No items were pulled for discussion from the consent agenda.
Hotel Occupancy Tax Fund Grants
The council heard a presentation on the Hotel Occupancy Tax Fund Grant Program administered by the BCS Convention & Visitors Bureau. The city’s FY14 budget includes $128,000 for the program.
Those items and more will be on the agenda when the College Station City Council meets Thursday at city hall for its workshop (6 p.m.) and regular (7 p.m.) meetings.
Here are five items to watch: