By Pat Loeb
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – You won’t have the dollar coin to kick around any more. Or, at least, you’ll have fewer of them. The mint is going to stop making them to put into circulation but a large stockpile remains.
Congress ordered the Mint, in 2005, to make four different dollar coins a year, each honoring a different president, until 2016. A handful of collectors seemed to be just about the only people interested in them.
By the sixth year of the program, Mint spokesman Tom Jurkowsky says, $1.4-billion coins had accumulated. “Not only manufacturing, but storing and protecting these in the Federal Reserve vaults just added to the economic challenges, if you will.”
Jurkowsky says the Treasury Department figured out they could obey Congress but produce far fewer coins — just enough for collectors, basically — and save $50-million a year. Coin fans say Treasury could save $55-million by eliminated dollar bills and forcing people to use the coins.
“We love coins. That’s what we do for a living here, but the greenback, the dollar bill has been part of our history and making change has been difficult.”