Oakland Needs a Public Bank!

What is a public bank?

A public bank is an entity created through legislation by local or state government. It holds the monies of the government entity as deposits, manages the entity’s accounts and makes fiscally responsible loans for the good of the community. It functions much like any bank, but it doesn’t speculate, and it doesn’t pay its executives millions in compensation. Its charter says that it must serve the people, not a private bank’s shareholders.

The City of Oakland Forum, hosted by City Council members Abel Guillen, Dan Kalb, and Rebecca Kaplan — and us — was a huge success. The room was packed to the gills, and all the feedback we’re hearing was positive. Couldn’t make it? Don’t worry; it’s on video!


Presentations by:

Marc Armstrong, “Public Banking for the Masses” President of Commonomics USA and a founder of the Public Banking Institute     Beginning at 9:24

Henry Wykowski, “Public Banking, Cannabis and the Law”  lead attorney for Harborside and past Federal prosecutor     Beginning at 23:33

Jesse Arreguin, “Public Banking, A Regional Approach?” Mayor of Berkeley, CA.     Beginning at 32:48

Nichoe Lichen, “Getting it Done in Santa Fe” Lead advocate for public banking in Santa Fe, NM     Beginning at 43:00

Tom Sgouros, “Public Banking, the Nuts and Bolts” Author, “Checking the Banks” and Senior Advisor to the Treasurer of Rhode Island.     Beginning at 57:25

The Public Bank of Oakland will:
  • Get Oakland out from under Wall Street’s boot
  • Reduce the cost of lending and borrowing for the City of Oakland and nearby communities that make use of the Bank
  • Solve the problem of millions of dollars in cash that the cannabis industry cannot legally deposit in private banks
  • Bring jobs, affordable housing, new small businesses and worker cooperatives, infrastructure, credit, and independence to our city