Wisconsin News

Gov. Walker shrugs off rent-to-own defeat

MADISON, Wis. - Republican Gov. Scott Walker is shrugging off state lawmakers' decision to nix his plan to exempt rent-to-own businesses from Wisconsin's consumer protection act.

Under the consumer protection act, rent-to-own companies must disclose their interest rates. Industry supporters say their transactions don't involve credit and as such shouldn't fall under the act. Walker's plan would have exempted them from the disclosure requirements and created new statutes specifically tailored to them.

A handful of Republican lawmakers sided with industry critics who insist the businesses prey on the poor and pressed the Legislature's budget committee to wipe out the governor's proposal. The committee deleted the provisions Thursday.

Walker told reporters Friday he believes rent-to-own business should have a right to operate in Wisconsin but new regulations for them were never a priority.

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