Northam seeks to change driver’s privilege card legislation, ban strip searches of children; approves reform of preferential voting and payday loans | Virginia

The move was celebrated by the Virginia Poverty Law Center and other consumer protection groups, which argued that predatory payday loans and car titles target the poor and trap them in financially precarious situations.

“We have been fighting for years to reform predatory lending, and it is a relief that we can finally end this legislative struggle,” Jay Speer, executive director of the Virginia Poverty Law Center, said in a statement.

Short-term lenders, meanwhile, told lawmakers throughout the 2020 regular legislative session that the proposed reforms could lead many of them to bankruptcy.

The legislation was presented by Del. Lamont Bagby, D-Henrico, and Senator Mamie Locke, D-Hampton.

“This legislation was essential before COVID-19 began to impact our communities. Now, even more Virginians can find themselves in financial difficulty and vulnerable to predatory lending practices, ”Bagby said in a statement.

Northam is to propose a change in legislation approved by the General Assembly banning strip searches of children, a practice that has come under public scrutiny after an 8-year-old girl was searched while she was visiting her father in Dillwyn correctional facility.

Northam’s amendment would add an exception to the policy, allowing minors who are under arrest to be strip searched if the officer reasonably believes they have a weapon.


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John McTaggart

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