Text Size:   A+ A- A   •   Text Only
Site Image

State to auction coins, jewelry, collectibles from abandoned safe deposit boxes
For immediate release                                                                                    08-01
More information:   Cyndi Wickham – 503-986-5248
                             Julie Curtis – 503-986-5298
Public invited to January 26 event at Parrish Middle School in Salem
“A little bit of everything” is how Cyndi Wickham, unclaimed property manager at the Department of State Lands (DSL), characterizes the contents of an upcoming public auction. “We’re offering some nice coins and jewelry as well as collectible stamps and sports trading cards.”
The public oral auction will be held Jan. 26 at Parrish Middle School in Salem, 802 Capitol St. NE, starting at 9:30 a.m. An auction preview is scheduled for Friday, Jan. 25, 3:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Parrish. An additional preview will precede the auction on Saturday, beginning at 8:00 a.m.
Every year, DSL receives hundreds of boxes, envelopes and packages containing the contents of abandoned safe deposit boxes. Financial institutions must turn over the contents to the state when owners have not kept up rental payments and when they are not able to be located.
Unclaimed property staff looks for owners by posting their names on DSL’s searchable database on the Web and by performing some specialized individual searches. Any contents that haven't been claimed within two years are sold at public auction.
The most recent auction, held in March 2007, generated in excess of $90,000 in gross receipts, said Wickham. “The school cafeteria was at capacity last year, with more than 300 attendees,” she said.
All proceeds from safe-deposit box auctions are held in trust in the Common School Fund (CSF), and made available for claim by rightful owners at any time in the future. The CSF provides funding for all of Oregon’s K-12 public schools through twice-yearly distributions. In 2007, nearly $50 million was sent to Oregon’s 198 public school districts.
The Jan. 26 auction will be conducted by Liska Auctioneers. Additional information, including an auction catalog, is available from Liska (www.liska-auctioneers.com; 1-800-866-8567) and from DSL (www.oregonstatelands.us; 503-986-5200.)
The State Land Board consists of Governor Theodore Kulongoski, Secretary of State Bill Bradbury and State Treasurer Randall Edwards. The Department of State Lands administers diverse natural and fiscal resources. Many of the resources generate revenue for the Common School Fund, such as state-owned rangelands and timberlands, waterway leases, estates for which no will or heirs exist, and unclaimed property. Twice a year, the agency distributes fund investment earnings to support K-12 public schools. The agency also administers Oregon’s Removal-Fill Law, which requires people removing or filling certain amounts of material in waters of the state to obtain a permit.