Monterey County officials show interest in public banking

Monterey Herald –

SALINAS — Monterey County elected officials have OK’d exploring the concept of joining other Central Coast counties to develop a public banking system that would provide benefits for economic development, infrastructure needs and affordable housing.

The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday gave the nod to exploring how interested Monterey County would be in joining Santa Cruz, San Benito, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties in a regional public banking system called the Central Coast Public Bank.

Introduced by Supervisor Luis Alejo, the decision was exploratory only and no taxpayer dollars would be used. If enough interest is generated, the county would then debate joining partner counties in conducting a feasibility study that would cost between an estimated $100,000 to $500,000.

The Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors is taking the lead on developing funding for a viability study.

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