YOUR May 20 editorial on legislation to regulate credit counseling says the bill "addresses a problem that doesn't exist."

But a weakening economy and the mortgage crisis have hit Pennsylvanians extremely hard. Many families are struggling to make ends meet, and they often need professional help to deal with financial challenges. Helping those families are credit-counseling agencies.

The fact is, Pennsylvania's law is almost 70 years old and has no regulations or requirements to protect consumers who need debt-management services. The bill sponsored by Rep. Dwight Evans ensures that consumers are protected from predatory or unethical organizations.

Pennsylvania's consumers deserve a law that caps the fees they pay for debt-management services, ensures agencies are licensed and bonded to do business and, perhaps most importantly, requires a written, documented plan to help guide them back to financial security. These safeguards do not exist in the state today.

Your opposition to the bill also focused on the fact that it would regulate both tax-exempt and taxable debt-management providers.

Every state that has recently updated its debt-management laws has chosen to regulate both classes of providers.

What Pennsylvanians should be concerned about is ensuring there are adequate regulatory and legal protections in place for consumers.

This bill would provide those protections.

Mark Guimond, Exec. Director

American Association

of Debt Management Organizations

'Vandal,' not 'artist'

Re "Bail for Cops in Graffiti Beating" (May 29):

Why did the Daily News refer to David Vernitsky as a graffiti "artist"? He is an alleged graffiti "vandal," not an artist. What a wonderful message this irresponsible reporting sends to the community.

Barry Fisher, Bristol