The Federal Reserve Board created a committee Wednesday to conduct a "fundamental review" of the central bank's check processing and automated clearing house operations.

The new committee comes just three months after the General Accounting Office criticized the Fed for not conducting enough long-range strategic planning on payment system issues.

"Given the significant changes occurring in payment processing, this is an opportune time to assess the Fed's role in the payments systems of the 21st century," Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan said in a statement.

Fed Vice Chairman Alice M. Rivlin will chair the committee, which also includes Fed Governor Edward W. Kelley Jr., New York Fed President William J. McDonough, and St. Louis Fed President Thomas C. Melzer.

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