| August 20, 2019

Labor causing local bank closures

The Nationals Member for Lowan, Emma Kealy says responsibility for the closure of local banking branches lies directly with the Andrews Labor Government.

Earlier this year, Daniel Andrews directed all public organisations to transfer their funds from local branches to Sydney headquartered bank, Westpac.

“This ill-conceived decision by Labor to remove government banking from local communities was a huge vote of no-confidence in our local bank branches,” Ms Kealy said.

“The Nationals could clearly see the directive would result in the demise of banks in rural communities and now I have been notified that the Bank of Melbourne Branch in Hamilton is to close.

“Labor taking these term deposits and larger interest bearing accounts away from country banks will almost certainly mean more bank closures in our rural communities and less money available to community groups and organisations through community banking donations.

“Unfortunately it did not take long for our warnings to become a reality with local job losses, less choice in local banking options for our local residents and funding support for local projects drying up.”

Bendigo and Adelaide Bank, one of Australia’s largest community banks, is a major contributor to the Australian public and has invested almost $114 million in Victorian communities since 1997.

Ms Kealy has written to the Andrew Labor Government, spoken in Parliament and launched a petition calling for this outrageous banking directive to be reversed.

“If Daniel Andrews, Premier for Melbourne had any idea how rural and regional communities work, he would not be making this decision to move local money out of town,” Ms Kealy said.

“Daniel Andrews needs to explain why he is making our local schools and hospitals move their money out of our local towns, forcing the closure of our local banks and putting community driven projects at risk.”

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