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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

CFPB Begins Payday Regulation Push In Richmond | Ed Mierzwinski

We joined the CFPB in Richmond Thursday for a field hearing on a proposed rule to regulate payday lending and similar high-cost short-term loans. The CFPB's draft rule is comprehensive, covering a variety of loans, but it contains potential loopholes that we and other advocates will urge the bureau to close before it finalizes this important effort. Here's a short blog with some photos from Richmond.

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News Release | PennPIRG Education Fund | Budget

NEW REPORT: Pennsylvania Receives "B" in Annual Report on Transparency of Government Spending

Pennsylvania received a “B” when it comes to government spending transparency, according to “Following the Money 2015: How the 50 States Rate in Providing Online Access to Government Spending Data,” the sixth annual report of its kind by the PennPIRG Education Fund.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

CFPB Adds Consumer Stories to Public Complaint Database | Ed Mierzwinski

Today, the CFPB took a step to make its excellent public database of consumer complaints even better, by adding complaint narratives (stories), but only with the consumer's consent. It's a step we've long urged. It will enrich our research into the marketplace, help consumers make choices and help good-actor firms avoid bad practices by others.

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Report | PENNPIRG Education Fund | Budget

Following the Money 2015

Every year, state governments spend hundreds of billions of dollars through contracts for goods and services, subsidies to encourage economic development, and other expenditures. Accountability and public scrutiny are necessary to ensure that the public can trust that state funds are spent as well as possible. 

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Blog Post | Financial Reform

As NY Brings Credit Bureaus To Heel, CFPB Arbitration Study Paves Way Toward New Protections | Ed Mierzwinski

Two big consumer stories so far this week offer hope to consumers victimized by credit bureau errors and, more generally, by an inability to take credit bureaus, credit card companies, banks or payday lenders to court when harmed. On Monday, New York's Attorney General Eric Schneiderman signed a groundbreaking agreement with the Big Three credit bureaus, Equifax, Trans Union and Experian. Then today, the CFPB released a report finding that consumer legal rights are infringed by small-print forced arbitration clauses in credit card and other contracts.  The CFPB will hold a webcast public hearing at 11am Eastern time today (Tuesday) to discuss the report's findings and next steps.

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Media Hit | Tax

A TAXING PROBLEM

The average Pennsylvania family makes $50,702 a year and pays roughly $1,556 in state income taxes. Corporations that make millions of dollars in Pennsylvania often face a far lower state income tax bill. In fact, 71 percent pay nothing at all.

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Media Hit | Budget, Tax

Make them pay

Grumble as we may, we all know we have to pay our taxes each year.

But while we pay our fair share to sustain schools, parks, libraries and police departments, most companies that do business in Pennsylvania don't pay any state income tax.

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Media Hit | Tax

In Pa., paying taxes is for the little people Businesses enjoy a huge loophole

A mind-boggling 71 percent of corporations that do business in Pennsylvania don't pay state income tax at all, according to the state Department of Revenue. Can you imagine what would happen if that many residents failed to pay their taxes?

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News Release | PennPIRG | Democracy

Citizens United Supreme Court Opinion Widens Corporate “Personhood” Rights

WASHINGTON, Jan. 21 - Today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in Citizen’s United vs. Federal Election Commission will significantly expand the role that the most powerful corporations play in election financing.

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News Release | Health Care

As Passage of Health Bill Nears, New Estimates of Pennsylvania Job Gains From Lower Premiums

WASHINGTON, DC – As Congress and the White House are locked in the final negotiations over the health care reform bill, a new analysis from the consumer group Pennsylvania Public Interest Research Group finds that the legislation will mean between 11,400 and 18,300 more jobs in Pennsylvania.  With job losses now the central economic issue confronting America, the analysis shows that the health care cost savings the bill will achieve will help businesses add new employees.

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