There are two basic ways to disburse money from an account at Treasury: by paper or by electronic funds transfer (EFT). A paper disbursement can take the form of a check (if the agency has check-writing authority), a warrant, or an account transfer (if the recipient is a State agency and the funds are being transferred from a Treasury Account).
A check is a demand draft drawn on the Oregon State Treasury and payable through the Treasury items-processing bank. A warrant is a formal certification of the validity of a debt with authorization or direction to the State’s items-processing bank to pay the debt upon presentment. They are similar in the ultimate outcome for the holder, payment of funds, but do have important distinctions.
Although electronic transactions are increasing dramatically, more than 3 million checks/warrants are still written each year. Again, these checks/warrants are written on Treasury -- not on a bank. Treasury has its own ABA routing number which is used for the clearing of State items through the Federal Reserve and other payment systems. Treasury contracts with a local bank to provide settlement and sorting services. This bank processes State checks/warrants from the Federal Reserve and other banks and pays them for these items. Treasury then pays the bank on a same-day basis. State checks/warrants become void after two years from date of issue.
For more information about checks and warrants, including check stock requirements, please see the Cash Management Manual Section V or contact a member of the Banking Section
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