Until Ohio's high court hands down a ruling on payday lending operations, the city of Lakewood is taking its own measures to clamp down on the high-cost loans. City councilors there passed a six-month moratorium on new cash-advance businesses. Some payday lenders have been operating under the state's Mortgage Loan Law or Small Loan Law as a way to avoid regulation under the 2008 Short-Term Lending Act. "If the Ohio Supreme Court rules that these lending practices are legal then council can lift the moratorium and we would advise that they do," said Kevin Butler, Lakewood's law director. "If, on the other hand, the court finds that these lending practices are illegal then that would throw the entire industry into a state of uncertainty and the legislature may need to act."