Instead of spending $10,000 in early withdrawal penalties and new fees, Douglas County commissioners Wednesday decided to seek new contract bids to serve the county's banking needs.
The county was considering switching banks from Firstar Bank, Ninth and Massachusetts, to Intrust Bank, 901 Vt., because Firstar is dropping its Kansas state charter effective July 16.
Under state law, the Treasurer's Office must deposit the county's active funds and invest the county's idle funds in a state-chartered bank or a bank that has its main office in Kansas.
Three other county departments also use Firstar to deposit money and invest idle funds.
Changing to Intrust would cost the county more than $10,400 when withdrawal penalties and interest rates are figured into what Intrust would charge. Intrust bid the next lowest contract rate for its services in November when the county was seeking services.
The news led the county commission Wednesday to seek new bids.
If no reasonable bids are received, Commission Chairman Bob Johnson said the county could maintain its checking account with Firstar. He said state law allows counties to bank with nonchartered banks if they can prove there is no reasonable alternative.