(Posted Feb 1)
It may soon be illegal for New Jersey stores to keep you from paying with cash and force you to pay with a credit card or your phone instead.
Both houses of the state Legislature on Thursday passed a bill that would make New Jersey only the second state in the U.S. — and the first in 40 years — to bar no-cash policies at businesses.
It’s now up to Gov. Phil Murphy to sign or veto the measure.
Experts say it’s becoming more common for businesses to require electronic payments — especially in cities — thanks to credit cards, debit cards, self-service kiosks, and mobile devices like Apple Pay being more readily available. It’s quicker and more convenient for stores.
But experts and lawmakers say cashless businesses disenfranchise people who don’t have the means to set up a bank account or can’t afford credit card debt.
|Experts say it's becoming more common for businesses to accept only credit cards and |
electronic payments and banning cash. (File) - (Dec 2 post)
Bill Maurer, a professor at the University of California-Irvine who directs the school’s Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion, said about 25 percent of the U.S. population doesn’t have access to credit cards or similar technology.
State Sen. Nellie Pou, D-Passaic, a main sponsor of this measure, cited a federal survey from 2015 that shows 7 percent of American households had no checking or savings accounts — and the number was twice as high for black and Latino households.