As Connecticut reckons with the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, lawmakers and community organizers have returned to the idea of public banking as a possible saving grace. Public banks — described as “operated in the public interest” and “owned by the people through their representative governments” by the Public Banking Institute, or PBI — are not an unfamiliar concept to the Connecticut legislature. Multiple bills to establish such banks, or to study the feasibility of doing so, have been introduced without success in the past five years.