A Bank of Washington could help state businesses on road to recovery

By Gregg Lanza and Makini Howell • The Seattle Times • February 3, 2011

THE promise of Democrats and Republicans finding common ground in an increasingly partisan age can often feel like a political pipe dream. But as small-business owners who are on the front lines of the economic recession, our needs go beyond politics.

One of us is a staunch Republican, the other a lifelong Democrat. Regardless of party affiliation, we are pragmatic, and we both acutely feel the credit crunch that is devastating small businesses.

Small businesses and family farmers are experiencing the greatest drop-off in lending since the Great Depression.

…The concept is simple: Instead of depositing our tax dollars in an out-of-state bank, why not keep our money local, promoting economic growth?

It’s based on a proven, bipartisan model. For more than 90 years, the Bank of North Dakota has partnered with local community banks to boost small-business and family-farmer lending. The bank returns profits to the state’s general fund, easing the responsibility of taxpayers for funding important state priorities.

Read entire article here.

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