by: Rachel Stockman Updated:
KENNESAW, Ga. - City leaders in Kennesaw put a one-year moratorium banning all new quick cash stores like auto title lenders or pawn shops from opening in the city.
“I had quite a few citizens of the past couple of months raise concerns over the number of title, pawn, payday lending businesses opening in our community,” said Cris Eaton-Welsh, a Kennesaw City Council member.
Eaton-Welsh said the stores are located on just about every gateway into the city.
“When we looked at the zoning we realized we didn’t have the tools in place that we need,” Eaton-Welsh said. “The moratorium will give our staff the time they need to assess and analyze the zoning that will best suit our community.”
Kennesaw residents had mixed reactions to the decision.
“I don’t think you should be able to tell something they shouldn’t be able to do something, I want to be able to open one of these businesses, I should be able too,” one resident told Channel 2’s Rachel Stockman.
Some residents say customers should know the risk, but others disagree.
“I think the city has every right to ban these things. They are taking money from people,” said Bob Mulligan, a Kennesaw resident.
He says his son, a recovering addict, fell into a trap with quick cash/car title loan stores in the neighborhood.
“My son struggled with this, pawned a lot of his stuff,” Mulligan said. “He’d get them back and he’d pawn them again, and the people knew of the problem and didn’t care.”
The moratorium would only affect new businesses from opening in the next year, and would not affect existing stores.