I was recently contacted by a representative from the Bank of Montreal (BMO) with some shocking and disturbing news of BMO’s corporate decision to close the BMO Branch in the community of Lansdowne by October 19, 2018. I have reached out to Council, Steve Clark, MPP and Gord Brown, MP and we are unified in our joint response of disappointment with this short-sighted decision.
This decision will have a devastating impact on the community of Lansdowne and our Township.
First and foremost, will be the negative economic impact on the residents who are BMO employees of the Lansdowne Branch. Good jobs in small communities can be hard to find and the loss of first or second income providers can be devastating.
Secondly, the residents of the community depend on their local financial institution for all their banking needs – client accounts, mortgages and line of credit. Local small businesses require deposit services, cheque cashing and access to coin and bill services. They want a personal relationship with a manager or representative from their local branch of their financial institution.
Lastly, our Township is serviced by the local BMO Branch. We have most of our accounts and banking services through BMO. We made a commitment to bank with BMO for the Township banking services to support the continued operation of a local banking institution in the village of Lansdowne.
As Mayor, I will lead a dialogue with my fellow Members of Council, MP Brown, MPP Clark, and local businesses on our future plans and interactions with BMO senior management regarding this unnecessary branch closure.
We will make further statements on our plans once they become finalized.
Joseph Baptista, Mayor
Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands