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Texas creditor offered to pay debt to halt short-term lending bill

Mar 29, 2011 Todd Milner

A Texas short term lender recently offered to cover the debts of one of its cases if a state lawmaker removed a short term lending bill from the floor of the House of Representatives. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Representative Tom Craddick was approached by a short term lender in his constituency who wanted to absolve a 2-year-old debt collection case. The issue stems from the 2009 case of Linda Lewis, who obtained $6,300 in an auto title loans to pay for her son's funeral. However, she was eventually forced to declare bankruptcy. The Star-Telegram reports that the creditor offered to wipe clean the debt in exchange for killing the bill. "(The company said it'd take) care of that loan and pay it off if I'd just drop the bill," Craddick told the Star-Telegram. "They just said they would go out and straighten it out and get it paid off. No, I don't think it was a bribe." Craddick and Representative Vicki Truitt are supporting short term lending legislation, a bill that would update a 1987 law that was originally meant to slowdown the industry's growth in the Lone Star State.