Santa Clara County’s board of supervisors voted unanimously to study how they might create a county-owned public bank, San Jose Spotlight reports. The move follows one by San Jose, the county seat and largest city, whose council members have also signed on, at least tentatively, to the idea.
Why the hesitation? Because publicly owned banks aren’t yet legal in California. Assembly Bill 857, which would allow cities and counties within the state to operate banks for the first time in history, is still making its way through the legislative process. In San Jose, councilmembers argued that the city should be “proactive … and strongly consider how this bill could benefit the 10th-largest city in America.”
AB 857 is endorsed by 100 organizations across California, according to the California Public Banking Alliance, which pushed for the legislation.
Continue reading on Next City.