TUCSON, Ariz. — In a novel twist to payday lending, a Phoenix credit union, the $1.1 billion Arizona State, has agreed to a partnering pact with a Tucson health care employer to help its workers "break the debt cycle" to payday shops.

The "FlexCash" package with a $750 maximum line is slated for launch next week at the University Medical Center Foundation, a nonprofit with close ties to the University of Arizona and a health care complex employing 3,300.

"We're very glad the credit union was willing to take on the risk and work with us to take on these kinds of loans," explained Kent Rollins, foundation president, citing serious problems of employees overextending an existing "Emergency Assistance" loan program offered by the foundation.

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