Land Bank Playbook: Signature Authority for Banking and Contracting

Land Bank Playbook Section XIV

A. Banking

The LRC was enabled by the Ohio General Assembly to act and transact more like private enterprise. Board or other governing approval for every core activities contract or expense is counterproductive. Rather, the Board should set parameters within which the executive director possesses authority to act with signature authority.

As to banking and checking accounts, there should be at least two (2) signature authorities: an executive director as well as his chief operating or similar officer in the executive director’s absence. The LRC should have at least two bank accounts. One account would be an operating account and the other a reserve account for funds not immediately necessary for operations. A credit card policy must be adopted and its employees held accountable to document all expenses used on the LRC credit card. The Ohio State Auditor does not accept a credit card swipe receipt; the underlying bill with the itemized charges is also required.

B. Operational Expense, Consultant’s Contracts and Professional Services

The challenge of the Ohio General Assembly when it authorized LRCs was to create a public-purposed entity, that operates in a private business-like fashion. In other words, the LRC is specifically not intended to serve as another layer of government. The LRC is governed by its board (not the government which created it) which sets policies for the executive director. These policies establish contracting and financial parameters, by category, allowing the organization to operate efficiently. Accordingly, the board should establish dollar thresholds by category of activity, up to which the executive director can enter into contracts, make expenditures and speak for the corporation. Contracts which exceed the thresholds established for the various categories, would need LRC board approval.

Section XIV Sample Forms