Oakland Needs a Public Bank!


While the City Administrator did recommend the community-based applicant with public banking knowledge for the initial public bank feasibility study, she also recommended that the City not fund the study now, but wait until the new budget is in place starting in July of this year. The Finance Committee referred the report back to the City Administrator with more questions. We could have answered their questions, but they didn’t ask us!

So one of our members made a video that makes many of our arguments for us.

Thanks to Friends member Maren Poitras for putting this together. Send it to your city councilmember, or your mayor if you’re not in Oakland. Also, please sign our petition to the City Council!

Meanwhile, we need everyone in Oakland to heavily lobby the City Council, starting now. Be sure to talk about how a public bank will save huge amounts of money and be useful to important City Councilmember priorities such as affordable housing, safe use of cannabis money, and dealing with the budget shortfall.  This is a two-year budget, so it  must include both the “pre-feasibility study” and the actual business plan. City Councilmembers’ budget hearings are over, but the City’s full budget meetings are just beginning. On May 30, we would like all of you to be there.

If you can join us on May 30,

1. Go online to https://solar.oaklandnet.com/Speaker/form and fill out a card. Choose the item “Open Forum.” Be sure to click Next and Register. Even if you don’t want to speak, get a card, so you can cede your time to someone who wants to speak longer.
2. Show up at 5:30! Open Forum is almost the first item.
3. Wear your t-shirt, or buy one there. We’ll have plenty @ $20.
4. Sit through a very, very long night so you can cheer when they add Rebecca Kaplan’s amendment funding our feasibility study to the budget.

City Council Budget Meetings (open to the public). Oakland City Hall, One Frank Ogawa Plaza (aka Oscar Grant Plaza), 3rd floor. Meetings may be viewed on KTOP TV 10

  • Tuesday, May 30, 5:30 p.m., special budget meeting
  • Monday, June 12, 5:30 p.m., special budget meeting
  • Monday, June 26, 5:30 p.m., special budget meeting

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