GLENDALE (CBS) — Glendale’s City Council made it official Tuesday night – $157,000 in unclaimed, uncashed refund and rebate checks from the city to residents and businesses are being put back into Glendale’s general fund coffers.

“These funds represent unclaimed checks since 2002,” said Thomas Lorenz, the City of Glendale Spokesman.

By law, the city cannot take back unclaimed checks of more than $15 for three years. City officials say they followed the law.

When asked if the city made a good faith effort to find those whose checks were unclaimed, Glendale Mayor Laura Friedman said, “Absolutely. We made a very good faith effort. We broadcasted it on our local television channel. We put out information in our publications and they do whatever they can to find them.”

Glendale, which is about to begin consideration of a new budget, will likely be facing a deficit of up to $10 million – so the $157,000 won’t do much to bail out the city.

But the Mayor says the money will be put to good use.

“In this economy, every little bit helps. And this money is going to translate into library books. It’s going to translate into street trees. It’s going to translate into a lot of good things for the community,” Friedman said.

CBS2’s Dave Bryan reports that the checks that went back to the city were between three and 10 years old.

If you have a check from the city of Glendale that was issued less than three years ago and is more than $15, you’re still free to cash it.