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Eye On Olympia

Give ‘em some credit…

Gov. Christine Gregoire signed into law this week a bill that would require colleges to exercise more control over who’s marketing credit cards to their students on campus.

“Where were you when I was in college?” Gregoire said to the bill’s sponsors as she signed the bill.

Rep. Maralyn Chase, D-Edmonds, said that a college administrator had urged her to vote for the bill, saying that he loses more students to credit problems than to bad grades.

But the bill faced surprisingly steep resistance in the House recently, where Republicans said that the state should keep its nose out of the financial dealings of adults.

To make that point, Rep. Richard DeBolt, proposed an amendment that no student could use a credit card at any state college or university.

“If we’re going to truly be a nanny state, we need to go all the way,” he explained.

Rep. John Ahern, R-Spokane, likened the bill to “Big Brother stepping in and trying to control people.”

“Eighteen-year-olds should know how to handle their money,” said Ahern. “And if they get in a little trouble, exercise plastic surgery. Cut that thing up.”

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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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