On Monday, Seattle made their effort to create a public bank official by issuing a request for proposals for a Seattle Public Bank feasibility study. The city is seeking “a skilled consultant available for immediate work to evaluate the legal, financial and administrative feasibility” of a public bank, as well as the potential community benefits. The consultant will be expected to deliver a final report by August 1, 2018. The city has budgeted $100,000 for the study. You can read the RFP here.
The RFP follows the Seattle City Council’s passage of Ordinance 125257 in February 2017, which cut back on the city’s dealings with Wells Fargo due to the bank’s involvement in the Dakota Access pipeline and predatory lending practices. Seattle opted not to renew their contract with Wells Fargo for bank depository services, and put a three-year ban on new investments in bank securities, while seeking a more socially-responsible banking service provider. At the time, some city council members also indicated interest in a city or state owned bank.