California News

Public Banks: A Path to Economic Transformation in California

Published on July 16, 2021

The Wellbeing Economy Alliance California hub and EcoCiv are hosting an online event on July 28 (5-6:30pm Pacific Time) on the role and growth of public banking in California. Register here for the event.

EcoCiv has partnered with the Wellbeing Economy Alliance (WEAll) to bring you our next “Dialogue for Global Systems Change” on the topic of public banking. There is a growing movement in the United States to make banking a public utility. In 2019, the State of California passed the first state law in 100 years to allow for the chartering of public banks, and now the State Assembly is considering legislation to create a state-level public bank. With a focus on developments in California, this interactive dialogue will explore the benefits and challenges of public banking and the role of the banking sector in a wellbeing economy.

Today, numerous cities and counties in California are moving to create their own public banks. These will operate in the public interest by law, keeping money local and directing it toward socially and environmentally responsible investments. But challenges to implementation remain, including the cost and practical requirements for creating these new institutions.

The live, online event will include a 60-minute moderated panel discussion, followed by 30 minutes of breakout room discussions for all attendees. Join us to learn more about this promising path to economic transformation. 


  • Ellen Brown – Founder, Public Banking Institute 
  • Naveen Agrawal – Organizer, Public Bank Los Angeles and the California Public Bank Alliance
  • Tom Steel – Legislative Assistant, California State Assemblymember Miguel Santiago’s Office

Moderator: Wm. Andrew Schwartz – Vice President, EcoCiv

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