Investment Program Reaches $1 Billion Mark

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A new state investment program that's offering Ohio school districts, cities and libraries higher yields and easier access to their invested income has surpassed the $1 billion mark.

Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel said he hopes the success of the STAR Plus program will inspire other states to follow suit.

The first-of-its-kind public investment fund, launched in June, offers the flexibility of some private-sector investment programs while securing public cash deposits through carefully screened federally insured banks.

State lawmakers unanimously authorized the program in a 2011 bill.

The program drives more public deposits to community banks. Participating cities, townships, counties, schools, libraries and other public entities trade daily access to their funds – as allowed with a typical bank account – for weekly access in order to collect higher returns.