Friday, July 22, 2011

Public/Private Banking for Community Investment, Bank of North Dakota, and More

Through a happy set of conincidences and really good teamwork (thank you, Rick Graap!), we are set for a superb IOT meeting. This meeting will take palce on Saturday, Aug. 6, from 10 - 12 AM, at the Ward 1 City Council Office located at 940 W. Alameda (roughly Alameda and Grande).
Our letter to the editor of the Tucson Weekly has been very well received. One of our suggestions was the formation of a public/private investment bank to help launch microenterprises, new ventures, and to offer training and upgrading for Tucsonans. Certainly we can agree that obtaining resources for everyone to move forward must be a high priority.
As it turns out, Rick Graap has been exploring this idea with Sam Stone, who has a high level of interest in the topic as well as a substantial business background. Sam will be joining us at the next meeting.
Rick and Sam have looked at the current situation in the community as well as many of our needs. But they have also turned to the Bank of North Dakota which is the only state-run bank in the United States. The BND opened in 1919 as a way to help farmers deal with the financial risks and uncertainties attendant to their operations. The BND has been a great success and has obviously grown in assets and scope. One fact that we should note is that the BND did alleviate misery and stabilize conditions in North Dakota during the Great Depression.
If you would like to learn more about the BND, you may wish to visit its website at
We will also be discussing how this kind of enterprise differs from a credit union and a community bank.
Please note that I have had very positive fedback about the suggestions in the TW letter. I am placing this matter on our agenda because it is the only concrete development I have received. Additionally, I'd like to discuss Marty's suggestions and certainly hear from everyone else about specific directions and projects. This discussion will be an important one, but it shoiuld not preclude any other ideas.
My family will be on holiday until Aug. 1 or 2. I shall be away from all electronic communication devices at that time. Nevertheless, please feel free to contact me, and I shall get back to you as soon as possible after my return.
I look forward to heaqring from you and to seeing you on August 6th!

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