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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: March 16, 2021 04:48 PM
From: Representative Christopher M. Rabb
To: All House members
Subject: Establishing publicly-owned banking in and for Pennsylvania
It’s our taxpayer dollars; let the people decide how we spend it for the benefit of our respective communities.
Public banks would be authorized to provide loans for a range of purposes including, but no limited to, school construction, affordable housing, public transit, and broadband access in collaboration with local banks, credit unions and community development financial institutions (CDFIs)
When “we the people” urge our elected and appointed officials to invest in capital-intensive projects, we should no longer have to borrow money from Wall Street in order to meet our collective needs as a commonwealth.
A more democratic, cost-effective and accountable way of doing so is to allow for establishing public banks in – and for -- Pennsylvania.
A public bank’s mission is to serve its stakeholders – the people of Pennsylvania – not private shareholders on Wall Street and beyond. And instead of relying on private banks who are driven by profit-maximization, public banks return their profits to the community stakeholders whose appointees will be represented on their boards.
In these uncertain times, local governments will be forced to make critical budget decisions with limited funding and resources. We need to provide our local governments with all possible avenues as we recover from this historic economic downturn.
By creating a state-owned bank, Pennsylvania would be providing funding resources and ensure that our communities have a path to rebuild and plan for future. 
I will be introducing legislation to establish a state-owned bank and provide a framework for local governments to create public banks as well — entities run by experienced banking professionals, not politicians or their surrogates.
A portion of the revenue earned by the state bank would be deposited into the general fund every year.
Independent oversight will ensure thorough audits will be conduct yearly along with the release of a public report on banking operations. 
I ask that you support this legislation and join me in working to create new ways to generated revenue without cutting vital programs or incurring substantial financial charges. 
Together we can ensure that our communities have the ability to plan and build for a better tomorrow without having to rely on Wall Street.