By Shela Tobias-Daniel, Partner Business Executive, State Treasurer’s Office
The State Treasurer’s Office (STO) has broad responsibilities and authority in the areas of investment, banking and finance. The STO offers resources in economic development, housing, education, health, community investment and small business. In its central role as a banker and regulator of financial activities, the STO has partnered with FI$Cal to help manage the state’s financial system.
STO banking and treasury functionality is part of the final phase of the FI$Cal project referred to as the SCO (State Controller’s Office)/STO Integrated Solution. The Centralized Treasury and Securities Management Division within STO, in partnership with FI$Cal, implemented STO treasury and cash-management functionality in October 2018. That enabled more than $2 trillion in annual banking transactions that are now accounted for in the FI$Cal system.
What exactly does that mean? It means that the state’s eight depository banks, which include Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo, can send their daily bank files directly to FI$Cal, where they are automatically loaded without manual intervention. Deposits made at these banks by state departments are recorded in FI$Cal, and the deposit slips used to make those deposits are generated using the system.
The deposit slip functionality, implemented statewide in October 2019, required deferred and exempt departments, in addition to FI$Cal departments, to use FI$Cal to generate deposit slips. All state departments now have the ability to log into the system and electronically submit their deposits. With this functionality now available in the FI$Cal system, STO has shuttered its legacy Electronic Deposit Form platform. That means core treasury book of record functionality is now complete in FI$Cal.
Before banking and deposit functionality were implemented in July 2017, reporting functionality related to Report 14 ‑ which documents all bank accounts outside the Centralized Treasury System (CTS) ‑ was a lengthy, manual process that departments performed annually. This functionality is important because it helps STO make decisions regarding collateralization of banks that receive deposits from state departments. With this functionality now part of the FI$Cal system, it is a fully automated process in which the banking header information only needs to be recorded once and subsequently updated with account balance information that can be entered annually. This makes the process much simpler and removes the potential for manual errors. Now all state departments are required to use FI$Cal to report on their accounts outside CTS because it is used by STO to manage the process.
There is more to come in building out the final system pieces for the Integrated Solution. End-state implementation will enable STO to push data to FI$Cal for functionality related to bond accounting and Investments.