HARD times in America have prompted some communities to print their own money.
The idea was first used during the Depression and is designed to boost local economies.
Businesses sign up to the scheme and a town sells its own dollars at a discount, usually for 90 cents. These bills can only be spent in the area in which they are issued.
Lyle Estill, a businessman in a small town where they are using bills called Plenty, said, "We’re a wiped-out small town in America. This will strengthen the local economy. The nice thing about Plenty is that it can’t leave here."
It is estimated there are more than 75 local currency systems across the country.
And if you think it couldn’t happen here, it already has.
Totnes in Devon and Lewes in East Sussex have created their own currencies that are accepted by local traders. The local notes can be bought with sterling and have the same value. They can be changed back again at any time.
They are meant to be used alongside the national currency but at the same time, they ensure money stays within the area, that local businesses are supported and it makes people more aware of their community.
I applaud the good intentions behind the schemes but I can’t see them catching on nationwide.
If every village or urban area had its own bills, we’d soon get into difficulties.
Imagine trying to buy a pint in a pub in Kirkburton with a Fixby fiver.
"Sorry. We don’t take those."
"What about a two pound note from Elland and a Quarmby quid?"
"Well all I’ve got left is a Netherton tenner."
"Go on, then. But I’ll have to give you change in Cleckheaton krona."