[IMGCAP(1)]Teenagers and young adults employed through the mayor of Washington, D.C.'s
summer jobs program will receive their pay on Visa-branded payroll cards issued by
JPMorgan Chase & Co., District of Columbia and bank officials announced Friday.
  About 19,000 individuals are enrolled in the 2008 Passport-to-Work Summer Youth
Program, which employs district residents ages 14 to 21. The program began June 16,
and is scheduled to end Aug. 22.
  The workers received their cards and PINs the first day on the job as part of a discussion of financial responsibility, David Umansky, a spokesperson for the mayor's
office, tells ATM&Debit News. The program's leaders also inform the workers they could use their cards to withdraw money surcharge- free from 98 Allpoint ATMs throughout Washington. Chase does not deploy ATMs in the district, says John T. Murray III, a Chase spokesperson.
  City officials provided workers with addresses of the nearest Allpoint ATMs.
Allpoint, which is based in Bethesda, Md., is the nation's largest surcharge-free ATM
network with more than 32,000 machines. Cardtronics Inc., a Houston-based ATM
ISO that is the world's largest based on machines owned and managed owns Allpoint.
Washington switched to cards from checks because of cost savings and convenience, Umansky says. "It's more efficient to pay people with
cards," he says. "They don't have to be at one location every two weeks, when they
are paid, to receive their paychecks. We were looking for a way to get the money to
the young people as quickly as possible with as little hassle as possible."
  The city pays college students $10 per hour and high school students $6.55 per
hour, Umansky says. The other advantage is cost–the city
says it will save $145,000 this summer in check fees and other bank-related costs,
Umansky adds. "The debit cards will let them keep more money in their pocket as this payment method eliminates check-cashing fees and bank account fees," said Natwar M. Gandhi, the district's chief financial officer. The workers will work in a number
of job categories, including arts, design,entertainment and media, community
and social services, construction trades, education, training and
library science, health-care support, hospitality and tourism, office and
administrative support, and sports and physical education.
  Employers automatically load the
pay onto the cards, and the workers can use the cards to make purchases or use
a PIN to withdraw cash from the ATMs, Umansky says.
  The other benefit is that the card teaches young consumers how to use payment
cards and manage money, he says. "This is basic financial training for them,"
Umansky says. The workers can check their card balances
by calling a dedicated phone number or by visiting the same Chase Web
site that all of the bank's customers use to check debit card balances, Murray
says.
  If a worker loses a card, he or she can call a telephone number to cancel the
card and get a new one, Umansky says. Chase, which is based in New York, has
worked with the jobs program for about 10 years, but this is the first time it has used
cards for payments, Murray says

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