Thursday, April 24, 2014

Public Banking in Pennsylvania: The Second American Revolution

by Mike Krauss, Pennsylvania Public Bank Project

Home to Ben Franklin and the first and successful public bank in America. Home to the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Washington’s Crossing and Valley Forge, Pennsylvania has long been called the Keystone State, owing to its central role in the birth of the American democracy.  To this day it is a “battleground” state in presidential elections.

Now, the Keystone State is stepping up to help make pubic banking and American history.  Formed just after the Public Banking Institute, the Pennsylvania Project is leading the way.

From the first, PA Project determined not to try for a state bank bill in the legislature, but instead to focus on municipal and county public banks, building broad support for a state public bank to follow.
First out of the gate was the small City of Reading, population about 88,000 and described in the New York Times in early 2012 as the poorest city in America. But newly elected Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer saw a different future. Two of his aides traveled to the first PBI national conference in Philadelphia, in April 2012, and there met with PBI and PA Project leaders.  Read more...

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