Our association was organized in June of 2000. We organized for one
purpose -- to combat pending legislation that threatened to kill our
business. We were told by a member of the House of
Representatives at the time who was on the House Banking Committee that, "if we want to
be around this time next year we better organize and speak as one voice.
If not, those who work against us will surely succeed."
Over the years we have been successful in protecting and
furthering the cause of our industry. We have accomplished this by
developing an excellent relationship with State Banking and with key
members of the Alabama legislature. In 2001 we were successful in
negotiating with State Banking on new title pawn legislation. We even
drafted our own bill. In 2001 and 2002 we worked with a group
of title loan operators in south Alabama to help diffuse a local community
situation that had severe negative industry implications (as in
legislation to eliminate our industry state-wide). As a result of our
presence in Montgomery, so far, there has been no further negative
legislation. We wish to keep it that way. However, this year presents
a major challenge. We have a great team AND we truly have our work cut out for
us in 07!
Although we are a voluntary organization, we do have substantial costs. We
have the best team we can assemble to help us look after our interest. We have hired
a top-notch lobbyists and law firm to help us achieve our goals. We have
also established an operating budget that allows us to meet these
critical challenges and to work to protect our industry. None of this comes cheap
and that is why we ask all of those who have businesses in the industry
to do their fair share to help by joining with us.
We have come a long way since 2000! We need the support of all title
loan operators in the state, not just a few, in order to succeed. To date over
companies, representing close to 300 stores have joined our association.
We are always fighting for survival in Montgomery. We hope you will join
in our effort to protect the title pawn business in Alabama. The folks in
Montgomery are keenly aware of what happened to the title pawn industry in
Florida (it was killed dead as you know). We donít want it to happen in Alabama!
If you have more questions, scroll down to the FAQ below.
Thank you for your interest.
Click here to join with us today.
Here are questions and comments we frequently hear regarding membership
and our association. Click on the question for more information.
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Why should I join the association?
What do I get for my money?
What is the association's position on payday lending?
What is the association's position on conventional pawns?
I am a member of the Pawnbrokers Association, why join yours?
How much are dues?
Why are the dues so expensive?
Dues In Other States Are Not This Expensive
Why join, I still benefit?
I don't like what you do.
Let me tell you what I think.
Q. Why should I join the association?
A. Our association is the only voice that speaks for the industry in
Alabama. There are those who strongly oppose us and who have made attempts
to eliminate our industry. Our industry will not succeed or exist unless
we unite and speak up.
Whether we like it or not, the future of our business is determined by the
political whims of those in Montgomery. That is just a fact. A basic truth
of politics is power. Our strength as a group is directly related to the
size of our organization. Every single member counts toward our power base
as viewed by those in Montgomery.
It is quite simple. If those who oppose us are successful, our industry
and your business will cease to exist!
Q. What do I get for my money?
A. First and foremost, you get a form of insurance by making your shared
contribution to protect your business and the title pawn industry from
those who wish to eliminate us. Second, you have access to shared
knowledge through our members and our legal staff. There is no way you can
buy this as an individual operator for the amount of dues you pay. That is
all that you get.
Q. What is the association's position on payday lending?
A. We support payday lending and the association for payday lending
(Modern Financial Group). We do not oppose payday lending and we discuss
the status at most every meeting. Our consultants and lobbyists have
extensive experience in this field and have been quite helpful in keeping
us informed about payday lending issues. Likewise, we will keep our
members informed of important payday lending issues since most of our
members offer these types of loans.
Q. What is the association's position on conventional pawns?
A. We have no position other than to support the industry in general. Well
over fifty percent of our members are conventional pawn operators who have
title pawns as a part of their overall business.
I am a member of the Pawnbrokers Association. Why do I need to join
A. The Pawnbrokers Association represents conventional pawnshop operators.
In the past they have taken the position that our industry is an adversary
and they have adopted and promoted positions detrimental to the title pawn
industry. They may represent the interests of the conventional pawn
industry, but they clearly do not represent the interest of the title pawn
industry. In a nutshell, they oppose us.
Q. Why are the dues so expensive?
A. Two reasons. First and foremost, we have hired the best representation
we can find. This includes a premier group of governmental consultants who
are among the best in the south and legal representation that is second to
none in our industry. This is expensive. Second, our association is new
and relatively small at the present. The cost of our first class
representation is spread among a few. Certainly, as we grow we expect the
cost per member to come down.
C. Dues In Other States Are Not This Expensive
A. We have taken the position to hire the best representatives we can find
in Alabama to look after our interest -- not the cheapest. We believe it
has worked well. In the over five years we have been in existence there
has not been any negative legislation against our industry here. Our state
has one of the best laws in the country for the industry. Look around at
our neighboring states. Every single one has seen threats and attacks and
most have seen regulatory changes to either eliminate the industry or
implement changes which are very unfavorable to the industry. We have not
had these changes. Our dues are designed to cover the costs of protecting
us. It has worked. If you have better ideas, we are all ears! Come join us
and work with us to make things better. Please don't sit on the sideline
and let others do the work.
How much are dues?
A. Dues for a single store are $1,400 per year and $400 for each
additional store for multiple store operators (capped at 10 stores). We
will bill quarterly. For a single store operator this works out to less
than $120 per month per store. This is probably less than basic business
essentials such as the power bill, telephone bill, payroll and rent! And,
it is just as important. Like these other essentials, if we fail as a
group your business will go away!
Q. Why join, I still benefit?
A. Well, yes, that is partially correct. There are two issues to consider.
First, if everyone takes that position it will not be true. Our industry
is like the community in which you live (local, state and nation). There
are some things the community can do as a group that you cannot do as an
individual. You take from the community and you give to the community. If
the community ceases to exist because of no support, you will be impacted.
Our community is being seriously threatened. We are just a few. If you
want to stand on the sideline while others carry on the fight alone it is
a high-stakes gamble and it is certainly your decision to make. Just
remember, if everyone makes the decision not to help, we will all go away.
So, you see, you really will not benefit.
Secondly, there are many important operational issues that we communicate
to our members that help them avoid trouble. We can not count the number
of calls we receive from non-members who want advise in dealing with
regulatory matters and legal matters - matters that affect their bottom
line and the continuation of their business. We know of cases where these
operators have lost their business because they were not aware of
important and critical issues. It's a minefield out there. To go it alone
is a very big gamble -- take it at the risk of your business!
I don't like what you do.
A. The association's officers and board have many years of experience in
the industry in the state of Alabama. The Council has been successful by
all measurements of success during our years of operation. We have worked
with various government groups to represent title pawn interests. If you
are not happy with what we have done, you owe it to yourself and to us to
bring it to our attention. We may not agree with you and we may defend our
position, but your voice is important. And, if you are interested in
serving in a leadership position to express your views, we are even more
interested in hearing from you. We need all of the help we can muster.
C. Let me tell you what I think.
Great! We want to hear from you. Just click here and send us an