Supporters of Payday Loan Limit Initiative Heading to Court

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Cole County judge is set to consider whether language that puts new restrictions on payday loans should appear on the statewide Missouri ballot in November.

The court case comes after supporters of the ballot initiative filed suit when state election officials ruled that they did not collect enough signatures to get the measure on the ballot. Supporters of the initiative say that state election officials did not count some valid signatures.

Opponents of the measure claimed that there were not enough valid signatures, as well as problems with the registration of petition gatherers.

Cole County Circuit Judge Pat Joyce will hear the case in Jefferson City on Monday.

The measure would cap the annual interest rate charged on certain short-term loans at 36 percent. According to a 2009 report from the Missouri Division of Finance, the average payday loan carried an annual interest rate of 431 percent.

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