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What happens to the loose change left at the airport security line?

Coin counting machines have long been a valuable tool for local financial institutions, but new legislation under consideration in Congress may make these tools especially important for a prominent federal agency.

According to The Washington Post, the Transportation Security Administration, the organization responsible for organizing the security checks at airports around the country, generated nearly $500,000 in income in U.S. coins in 2012 from the loose change left behind by airplane passengers. That total is more than $100,000 greater than the amount the TSA generated by gathering left-behind change in 2011. The most money collected in 2012 came from Miami International Airport, where travelers left $39,613.

Currently, the TSA is free to spend all of that income on civil aviation security initiatives. However, the Appeal Democrat, a newspaper based in Marysville, Calif., said the U.S. House of Representatives recently voted in favor of legislation to would require the TSA to donate the money collected from loose change to various nonprofit organizations.

Organizations that receive a large number of coins on a regular basis may want to consider investing in coin counting machines to easily turn loose change into cash that can be transferred to other parties. 

December 17, 2013