Butkovitz: City Paid Banks $1 Million in Fees

City Hall paid more than $1 million in fees to three separate banks in 2011, but City Controller Alan Butkovitz says nobody knows what the city got for its money. The fees were paid to Wells Fargo, PNC and Bank of America—mostly for armored car service and account maintenance—but officials in the Treasurer’s Office admitted they were confused by the billing and unable to determine if the city was paying the correct amount for services rendered. Honestly, isn’t this the way most of us pay our bills? Who looks closely at the fees in your phone or gas bills? Then again, we do expect City Hall to be a little more rigorous about these kinds of things. And it sounds like somebody should do a better job of tracking the city’s finances—Butkovitz also found the city’s Revenue Department waiting days or weeks to process checks for tax and water payments, and criticized the lack of electronic deposits to speed that process. [City Controller’s Office]