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LA Times: Calif. governor to introduce state's consumer financial protection law

California Gov. Gavin Newsom will introduce Jan. 10 a California Consumer Financial Protection Law that seeks to revamp the rules protecting consumers from predatory businesses, David Lazarus said in a Jan. 9 column in the Los Angeles Times.

The proposed law will replace the existing Department of Business Oversight and rename it the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation, Lazarus wrote, citing materials from the governor's office.

Aside from having all the functions of the Department of Business Oversight, the new department will be granted additional regulatory power and responsibility. It will also act as watchdog over debt collectors, a function currently reserved for federal authorities.

The new department will hire dozens of new staff, identify patterns of abuse in consumer markets, and further assist people often targeted for questionable financial practices, such as veterans and immigrants, according to the column.

The proposed law will be part of Newsom's proposed 2020-2021 state budget and is expected to cost state taxpayers $44.3 million during the first three years, according to the column. This will be taken out of existing cash in the Department of Business Oversight's budget.