State Lawmakers Mull Switch to Debit Card Refunds

Sep 11, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma agencies are saving money by switching to debit cards instead of paper checks for things like unemployment benefits and tax refunds, but at least one lawmaker is concerned the cards are posing problems for some citizens and leading to huge windfalls for a private contractor.

State Rep. Scott Inman of Del City outlined his concerns Tuesday during a meeting of the House Government Modernization Committee.

Among those who testified at the hearing was 81-year-old Orland Olandese, a retired postal worker in Inman's district who received his $240 state tax refund on a debit card. Olandese said he had never used a debit card or ATM machine and didn't know how to access his funds.

The Oklahoma Tax Commission estimates $500,000 in savings from the switch to debit card refunds.