Ingham kicks off banking program

LANSING, MI – Ingham County officials have launched a new program for people who don't have bank accounts. County Treasurer Eric Schertzing says several area credit unions and banks will offer low-interest loans and other low-cost financial services.

Schertzing says there are 8,400 households in the City of Lansing who don't use bank accounts to manage their finances.

"They pay someone to cash their checks, pay someone to sell them money orders so that they can pay their bills," he says. "In the long run, they build no positive credit and when they need a loan, they turn to payday lenders, who charge predatory rates."

The program - called "Bank on Michigan" - will offer training for people who want to open a checking or savings account. Schertzing hopes eventually to expand the program statewide.