Chase seeks veto of fee disclosure

Jun 7, 2011

OLYMPIA, Wash. – JP Morgan Chase, the second largest bank in the country, is lobbying Gov. Chris Gregoire to line-item veto a requirement that the bank alert Washington cash assistance clients of an ATM fee the bank charges.

Chase collects 85 cents every time a Washington welfare client withdraws money at a cash machine. The state agreed to the fee as part of its contract with Chase to dole out electronic benefits. But the ATM charge is not disclosed at the time of the transaction. Legislation currently on Governor Gregoire’s desk would require ATMs to flash a warning about the fee.

Babs Roberts with Washington’s Department of Social and Health Services says Chase says that’s not feasible.

“The agency has advised the Governor that our vendor does not have the technology,” Roberts said, “or the technology does not exist, to provide that fee notification at the point of transaction.”

However, a University of Washington computer science professor said Chase should be able to program its own ATMs to warn of the fee. But not necessarily non-Chase cash machines.

JP Morgan Chase declined to comment for this story. A Gregoire veto, if it happens, will come next week.

Copyright 2011 Northwest News Network