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City of Chicago triples self-service payment Kiosk Network

By Edlyn Cardoza

September 09, 2021

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City of Chicago, CityBase, SaaS, Cloud, Payments, Payments as a service, GTY Technology Holdings Inc., kiosks, USAThe City of Chicago and CityBase, a provider of government and utility payment technology, recently announced an expanded engagement that introduced 70+ self-service payment kiosks to neighborhoods across Greater Chicago. CityBase is a business unit of GTY Technology Holdings Inc., a provider of SaaS/Cloud solutions for the public sector.

Chicago engaged with CityBase in 2017 to provide customers with self-service payment options online and via kiosks. On the kiosks, customers can pay for utility bills, parking tickets, business taxes, citations, and more using cash, check, credit, debit, and prepaid cards.

In 2021, the City introduced 52 new payment kiosks — most recently with a 30-kiosk rollout this summer — bringing their total footprint to 74 kiosks at 70 locations citywide, including several that offer 24/7 access.

Kiosk locations include City Hall and City Clerks’ offices, libraries, police stations, family services and community centers, and other payment centers. Customers can access the kiosks downtown and in neighborhoods across the City — as far south as 131st Street, as far east as Hegewisch, as far north as Rogers Park, and as far west as Austin and Clearing.

“Now more than ever, it’s important that everyone has easy-to-use, self-service payment options in their own neighborhoods,” said Reshma Soni, Comptroller for the City of Chicago. “Customers who want or need to pay in person can do so in locations near their homes. This ensures that all residents have equal access to stay current on their important bills. The CityBase kiosks provide our customers with real-time information about their balance, helping them to avoid fees and penalties. The payment technology makes it easy for people to pay multiple City bills on a single kiosk machine, with automated reconciliation to the right department, which helps our staff.”

Mike Duffy, CEO and founder of CityBase, said, “The City of Chicago and CityBase have long shared the priority of improving access to public services for every single resident, no matter where they live in the City. By dramatically increasing self-service options for people who pay in person, the City is making it more convenient for people to pay for obligations like monthly water bills in their own neighborhoods, during a time that works for them.”

Many customers who pay in person prefer to pay with cash, some of whom may be under-banked, without access to a bank account or credit card. Their only alternative may have been to take off work during business hours to make a payment, or to use high-fee services like check cashing stores. The new kiosks let customers pay in cash without incurring any added fees. Kiosks also promote the safety of residents and staff by reducing person-to-person contact in government buildings and other payment locations.

The kiosk technology is integrated in real-time to underlying City department databases, promoting efficiencies for the City by reducing time-consuming manual payment processing and reconciliation. This technology enables customers to look up their current amount due on the kiosks using a variety of options. Customers can make a full or partial payment and the transaction immediately posts against their balance, helping customers avoid late fees or other penalties, including if they pay after business hours.

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