Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Rashida Tlaib have proposed a bill that would pave the way for public banks across the country. This could save our cities and states millions of dollars — our tax dollars.
For example, the city of Boston now pays $67 million a year in interest to Wall St Banks. Just interest — this doesn’t include all the fees they have to pay up front. And this money, Boston taxpayer money, goes out of state immediately. A public bank would mean that cities, towns and states would be able to get loans without taking huge hits in fees and interest.
COVID has put cities and towns across America in dire straits. We can’t continue with “business as usual” where Wall St banks are allowed to gouge those least able to pay. We shouldn’t allow them to charge 30% interest rates to people with low credit scores, and we shouldn’t allow them to charge our cities and towns high interest and fees either. City money is public money — it should be handled by a public bank.
And for a tasty climate-action bonus, AOC and Tlaib’s bill also prohibits public banks from investing in or doing business with the fossil fuel industry. About time.