The Ways and Means Committee of the Board of Aldermen has passed Board Bill 63, which will establish the Office of Financial Empowerment in the City of St. Louis Treasurer's Office.
The bill, which was co-sponsored by Alderman Chris Carter and Alderwoman Christine Ingrassia and several members of the Ways and Means Committee, now advances to the full Board of Aldermen for approval.
The Office of Financial Empowerment will be operated by the Treasurer's Office with the goal to help people, regardless of background, get on a path to financial success. A strong financial identity empowers individuals to make better decisions about money, in turn creating more stability for the St. Louis community.
"Financially empowered people get involved in communities," said Tishaura O. Jones, Treasurer of the City of St. Louis. "Having an Office of Financial Empowerment is critical to our mission of helping people to make better choices with their money and avoid predatory lending and purchasing practices. Financially empowered people start businesses and give other people jobs. This is about making St. Louis a better place to live and work."
Treasurer Jones has worked tirelessly on financial literacy issues since taking office on January 1, 2013. She immediately made direct deposit mandatory for all City of St. Louis employees, started a monthly financial literacy lunch and learn series for City employees, hosted a financial empowerment fair for St. Louis area residents, and partnered with the First Financial Federal Credit Union to provide free checking and savings accounts for participants in SLATE's Summer Youth Employment Program.
Future financial literacy plans include establishing a kindergarten to college savings program and hosting a regional financial empowerment summit.
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