Legislation Would Have Authorized Automated Payment Services in New Jersey

by Kay Byfield – Marketing Manager

Last month, one of our account executives in the Mid-Atlantic region, asked me to write a newsletter article to submit to the New Jersey Association of Counties (NJAC) publication, County Biz. In anticipation of pending legislation, my colleague wanted to build awareness in the state about TouchPay/GTL Financial Services automated payment services.

The new law would have allowed counties, municipalities, and state agencies in New Jersey to take advantage of the cutting edge automated payment processing services provided by TouchPay dba GTL Financial Services. The article, “Automation + Payment Options Increase Collections for County Governments,” describes the range of automated payment alternatives available to governments along with the benefits to New Jersey agencies and citizens. It also provides questions an agency should ask a prospective payment services provider. (NJAC County Biz, page 13)

The November edition of the State House News which described legislation that would authorize local governing bodies in New Jersey to accept and make payments using electronic fund technologies. The soon-to-be-available payment methods include wire transfers, electronic fund transfers (EFT), prepaid debit cards, and Automated Clearing House (ACH) payments. Up until now, government agencies in the state were restricted by law to traditional paper checks and electronic direct deposits. NJAC expressed support for the new legislation because adding digital payment technologies will reduce printing and processing costs, enhance security, increase productivity, and improve cash management throughout state government. (New Jersey State House News, page 5)

TouchPay/GTLFS accepts and processes government payments using state-of-the-art Lobby Kiosks, Countertop Terminals, Online Payment Platforms, IVR phone payment services, and Walk-In Retail, a local cash processing service. Our reporting platform is integrated across all the payment channels and our turn-key business model furnishes every aspect of installation, integration, maintenance, reporting, security, accounting, customer service and marketing. Because the costs of services are covered by the small convenience fees paid by the people making transactions, taxpayers and agencies incur no expense.

Our more than 250 TouchPay/GTL Financial Services clients include correctional facilities as well as city and county services, courts, and state agencies across the U.S. We process payments and deposits for court services, child support, traffic tickets, utilities, government fees and fines, trust deposits, etc., and we accept cash, debit cards, credit cards, and checks.

The Assembly and Senate did pass the bill, but when it went to the Governor, it was not signed so it will not become law. New Jersey’s legislature will need to reconsider it again in the next session.

Like New Jersey, many states are beginning to see the value of allowing automated payment services. Increasing the number of payment options expands transaction volumes which is good for the agency, and automation decreases risks and costs. At TouchPay/GTLFS, we are dedicated to maximizing convenience for payers and minimizing headaches for our agency clients. In 2016, as more states recognize the benefits of payment automation, we will continue to provide the most reliable, secure and convenient ways to pay.