Artwork and Design

The physical dimensions of the Salt Spring Dollar are identical to the Canadian Dollar (length, width and thickness), and are printed on a durable, high quality paper. This allows a banknote counting machine to be used for counting and bundling.

The currency was designed by island artist Warren Langley. His mixed media elements comprised of pen and ink, oil paints and digitized computer art were merged together with the technical skills of project manager and local artist/designer Pat Walker.

Working with basic elements supplied by SS IMF Directors Bob McGinn and Eric Booth, the design team has created a complex and visually stunning currency, rivaling the artistry of money designers worldwide. Twenty-five separate layers, including anti-counterfeiting techniques, combine to present bills that are simultaneously complex, nostalgic, artistic and timely.

The green ones and the brown twos, along with historical portraits create a feeling of nostalgia and conjure up the good old days when money looked like real money.

Contributing Salt Spring Artists

Warren Langley

Co-designer (with Pat Walker) of the whole series of bills, contributed his paintings “Beached” and “Captain’s Passage” for the backs of the $$2.00 and $$5.00 bills

Warren Langley’s website:

Issuing Policies

Our initial issue ($$1, $$2 and $$5 bills) was printed on Salt Spring Island. Our issues of the $$10, $$20, $$50 and $$100 bills were printed at Adler Tech, International in Toronto, creating very high-security bills with hidden anti-counterfeiting tools. In early 2008 we secured an agreement with Adler Tech which allows all of our new issues to be printed on Salt Spring, using the same state-of-the-art security measures. Follow these links to view the security features on the $$10 bill and the $$100 bill.

The printed Salt Spring Dollars are then transferred securely to another facility for gold over-foil printing, before being returned to our secure burglary-class vault on Salt Spring Island.

Our $$50 1/2 ounce silver coin is minted at the Lasqueti Mint on Lasqueti Island, BC.

From there, the Salt Spring Dollars are sold (or issued) into circulation in exchange for Canadian dollars through various commercial outlets in the community.

The Canadian dollars used to purchase Salt Spring Dollars are held as the reserve funds redemption by businesses. This means that Islanders and tourists can buy food, clothes and gas with Salt Spring Dollars while merchants are assured that they in turn can exchange Salt Spring Dollars back into Canadian dollars when they want to.

Legally, Salt Spring Island Dollars are considered gift certificates, as they meet all four of Revenue Canada’s requirements. (See Revenue Canada P-202 Gift Certificates.) This means, among other consequences, that you do not pay sales tax when you buy Salt Spring Dollars, although you pay the customary sales tax when you buy goods with Salt Spring Dollars, just as you would if you paid with Canadian dollars.

Salt Spring Island silver coin

History of Salt Spring Dollars

Salt Spring Dollars is administered by the Salt Spring Island Monetary Foundation, which was founded as a not-for-profit society on July 17th, 2001, in the Province of British Columbia.

Constitution of the Salt Spring Island Monetary Foundation

  1. The name of the society is Salt Spring Island Monetary Foundation.
  2. The purposes of the society are to design, issue and maintain a local currency for Salt Spring Island with the goal of raising funds for worthwhile community projects while promoting local commerce and goodwill.

The bylaws of the society are those set out in Statutes and Regulations of British Columbia, Schedule B to the Society Act.

Image: Founders Eric Booth and Bob McGinn. William Krebs absent.

SSIMF Directors


Michael Gallant, President

Michael is driven to help re-create a more compassionate, just world. It became apparent to him in the mid 90’s that the world’s social and environmental ills are rooted in the “money problem”. Though not giving up the hope for change in the wider national and international systems, he has reserved himself to try and make grassroots change, by helping to develop a world-class alternative local money system. Michael is principal of Virtuous Circle, a consulting company specializing in strategic planning, business development and marketing.  He has lived on Salt Spring Island for the past eleven years, and is the father of three children.

Salt Spring Island silver coin

Meron Moroz, Treasurer

With over twenty years bookkeeping experience and a strong interest in finance, she brings solid skills and insight to the position. Born and raised in Uxbridge ON, a small town outside Toronto, she earned her bachelor of science in chemisty/biochemistry from McMaster University. Meron has lived on Salt Spring Island since 1991 where she raised her two children. Her wide array of volunteer experience includes coaching ball and being a beaver cub leader when her children were younger, but go far beyond to community projects promoting local self-sufficiency both here and in locations as far away as sub-Saharan Africa.


Donn Tarris

Donn says, “I am not easily confined by boxes. If I do find myself in one, I am quick to begin altering its shape and appearance to be something more creative, having fewer corners. Our global money system is a very confining box, one that holds back the human species from becoming all it can be. I look forward to a time when humans need not measure their output by the hour, when they cease to keep track of who did what when. In the mean time, I work towards helping community currencies allow the fair trade of services and products within their communities, allowing all to participate.”

© 2001-2016 Salt Spring Island Monetary Foundation. All rights reserved.


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