Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Marylanders back campus credit card marketing reforms

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WASHINGTON — Maryland students and a state delegate applauded the release of a nationwide survey that recommends broad restrictions on credit card marketing to college students.

Their support came during a conference call last week to discuss ‘‘The Campus Credit Trap.” The report by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group recommended major reform.

Almost two-thirds of college students sign up for one or more credit cards, and often pay high fees, suffer delinquencies or lower their credit scores.

College students overwhelmingly supported measures like marketing cards with fair terms (74 percent) and banning the distribution of student information to credit card companies (67 percent) that heavily target them.

Del. Susan W. Krebs (R-Dist. 9B) of Eldersburg introduced a bill to limit aggressive marketing. When college students sign up for several cards, they often damage credit scores, she said.

The revised House bill — which passed unanimously and is scheduled for a hearing in the Maryland Senate Finance Committee — now calls for public colleges to develop policies and educate students on credit card marketing.