This is an archived article that was published on in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Riverton • Four years ago, city leaders placed restrictions on payday loan companies, limiting them to specified commercial zones and capping their number at one per 10,000 residents.

But at the time they excluded title-loan companies, which allow people to borrow cash by putting up their vehicle titles as collateral. Now city leaders are beginning to acknowledge that was a mistake.

The city Planning Commission on Thursday voted 6-1 to recommend an ordinance amendment imposing the same restrictions on title-loan companies as payday lenders.

If approved by the City Council, the change would apply to future businesses and grandfather in existing title-loan businesses.

"I think it's a little too late," commission member Brian Russell said. But after a discussion by city planners, attorneys and other members, Russell voted with the majority.

Chairman Dennis Hansen added in his motion that he would like there to only be a total of four check-cashing and title-loan businesses allowed in any given area.

Comments by resident Kristien McDonald may have helped nudge commissioners.

McDonald, who lives near a cluster of this type of business, says leaving the door open for more without limit is inviting future problems.

She recounted seeing people going from one loan company to the next, using cash from one to pay off another, miring these people ever further in debt.

"It's for a target population that can't pay their bills," said McDonald.

"They're targeting that demographic."

Assistant Cty Attorney Casey Taylor said Riverton didn't anticipate this kind of company being an issue, but as the city grows, it has become clear leaders have decided it's a situation that needs to be addressed.