OASIS, which stands for Our Advanced Solution with Integrated Systems, is a new software system that will integrate the state's budgeting, human resources and financial management.
The state would have had to make costly changes to the OASIS system to keep using paper checks, Joynes said.
Employees with a pay card will be able to access funds free at Visa member banks and at certain ATMs in the state, as well as pay with the card wherever Visa is accepted.
There are 16 ATMs in the state network within Charleston city limits and many more throughout the state.
If employees don't use one of the ATMs designated by the state, they will be charged fees to get their salaries. At out-of-network ATMs, cardholders will pay $1.95 per transaction. There also is a 25-cent fee for declined transactions and fees to replace the cards or get a second card.
The state already pays unemployment benefits via Chase debit cards. In 2011, the National Consumer Law Center issued a report saying West Virginia's program charged some of the highest fees in the nation for out-of-network ATM withdrawals ($2.75 each) and denied transactions ($1.75).
Reach Lori Kersey at lori.ker...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1240.