CONCORD, N.H. (4/14/08)--The New Hampshire House Commerce Committee has begun hearings on a bill to study responsible options for consumer credit to replace payday loans. It would create a commission that would include a representative from the New Hampshire Credit Union League. Senate Bill 472 would form a 17-member commission that would include representatives of the league, the Attorney General's office, the Banking Department, the Consumer Credit Counseling Association, among others (NHPoliticker.com April 10). It would be charged with studying the potential for new products to provide responsible consumer credit to people without charging exorbitant interest rates or fees. S.B. 472 is a companion to an earlier bill, House Bill 267, that capped interest rates at 36%. HB 267 was passed by the House and Senate, and Gov. John Lynch plans to sign the bill into law, said Rob Kimmett, senior vice president of marketing/public relations at the league. The league testified in support of the earlier house bill, but does not plan to introduce testimony on the current bill. "This bill involves no controversy and there is no need for the league to testify on its behalf," Kimmett told News Now. S.B. 472 is dependent on H.B. 267 becoming law, he said. The commission would be required to present its findings and recommendations by Nov. 14. "The league is happy to be involved in any efforts to ensure that the people of New Hampshire have access to affordable and fairly priced and honest credit," said Kimmett.