California cities could open their own banks under bill backed by Democratic lawmakers

California cities could open their own banks under bill backed by Democratic lawmakers

Two California Democratic lawmakers have introduced a bill that would develop a state-owned banking system, modeling it on a program run by one of the smallest states in the union.

California Assemblymen Miguel Santiago, D-Los Angeles, and David Chiu, D-San Francisco, have introduced Assembly Bill 857, which would enable local governments to charter their own public banks.

North Dakota, with a population of fewer than 1 million people, has America’s only state-owned bank. The Bank of North Dakota this year is celebrating its centennial anniversary.

Santiago and Chiu would bring a similar system to California’s 39 million residents, arguing that a public institution might better serve the interest of low- and moderate-income households.

Continue reading on the Sacramento Bee.

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