Figures in circle around piggy bank Source: Shutterstock

As a credit union executive and public banking advocate, I am eager to provide another perspective on public banking than the one presented by Henry Meier last month in CU Times. Public banking is based on the premise that public money should work for the public good. When public money is placed in private banks, those funds too often leave the local community and fail to support local reinvestment.

I know well the important role that credit unions play in meeting the financial services needs of low-income people and communities. But Mr. Meier described public banks as competitors to, or distractions from, our vital work. This is false. Rather than compete with credit unions like mine, public banks would partner with us to increase our capacity to lend, grow and meet our communities’ needs. This partnership model is effective precisely because it leverages the proven expertise of local lenders and the scale of public deposits.


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