Contact: Danielson Tavares
T: (617) 722-2060 Fax (617) 722 2849
For Immediate Release
House passes Representative Henriquez’s Act to
Create a Maximum Allowable Check Cashing Rate
July 26, 2012
State Representative Carlos Henriquez working directly with constituent, community activist and BU student Alexandra Knowles filed the bill in the first 21 days of taking office. The bill would create a maximum rate that businesses can charge to cash checks. Through grass roots community organizing and good working relationships with democrats and republicans in the House as shown by the cosponsors of the bill, it quickly moved through the Consumer Protection and Licensure committee after a hearing with additional support.
Representative Henriquez stated “This bill will help the working class families across the state. There are 108,000 unbanked families in Massachusetts. There are families who are literally living check to check or stashing what money they can save into their mattress or a shoebox because they cannot maintain a minimum balance or afford to pay a monthly bank fee.” These are families whose average median income for a family of four is between $20,000 and $27,000 a year.
There are 145 Check Cashers operating in Massachusetts from Springfield to New Bedford, Brockton, Lawrence, Boston, Lowell and beyond. They are convenient and provide other services like utility payments also. The goal of this bill is not to hurt these businesses but protect some of the Commonwealth’s most hardworking and vulnerable families that rely on them for services. This bill creates a healthy balance between the two and makes Massachusetts the 27th state to regulate this business. Representative Henriquez stated “It is my hope that this helps working class families get a little closer to the middle class. If it helps add one dinner or put extra money towards a college education then it’s well worth it.”
Carlos Henriquez, State Representative
5th Suffolk District (Dorchester/Roxbury)
State House, Room 33
Boston, Massachusetts 02188
617.722.2800 x8569 (phone)
Representative Carlos Henriquez
(617) 722-2849 Fax