The City has placed on the ballot proposed revisions to the City Charter which would give the City the ability to issue checks to pay for City expenses. The City Charter currently requires the City to use warrants only.
By issuing checks, the City could use banking products that add additional safeguards for City funds. The City has controls in place to prevent warrant fraud, but issuing checks instead gives the City tools to catch potential fraud or alterations sooner. This prevents loss to the City and decreases the time it would take City staff to retrieve funds from a fraudulent warrant.
Because warrants are drawn on the City and not on a bank, the City bears the majority of the liability. Checks drawn on a bank account have shared liability.
Two banks which do business with the City of Lincoln wrote letters supporting the City Charter revisions. One wrote: “The bottom line to consider is that banks are better equipped with the latest technology and tools to helps its customers prevent fraud on their accounts and to perform daily tasks in a more efficient and cost-effective manner through the check clearing process.”
Other proposed revisions change outdated language in the City Charter. The sections proposed for revision are in Article IX, Finance and Taxation: 19, 28, 30, 31 and 35.