"$56"- * 54  r  /&84

Postal banking proposed for rural villages


An ABM in every rural post office? That could be part of the future for Canada Post if themayors of Prescott-Russell have their way. The United Counties of Prescott-Russell council (UCPR) approved plans to start a lobbying effort for “postal banking”, to help deal with the continuing elimination of rural banking outlets. Mayors Guy Desjardins of Clarence-Rockland and Fernand Dicaire of Alfred-Plantagenet brought the issue up du- ring theMarch 8 session of counties council. “It’s something that could be done,” said Dicaire. Bothmayors noted that in their ownmu- nicipalities, some villages have lost their sole banking outlet as a result of financial management downsizing by the head offices. Plantagenet saw its RBC outlet shut down a couple of years ago.The villages of Clarence Creek and Wendover both lost their caisse populaire.The National Bank branch in the village of Alfred is due to close soon, leaving just the local caisse populaire outlet for that village. Both Desjardins and Dicaire met with senior government officials on the issue, during the recent Ontario Good Roads Asso- ciation meeting. Now they want to take the matter a step further. Both Warden Gary Barton and Mayor Desjardins noted that banks and other finan-

Plusieurs villages ruraux commeWendover ont vu leur caisse populaire locale et succursales bancaires fermer, dans le cadre d’une décision de gestion financière de la part du siège social. Les résidents de ces localités doivent maintenant se déplacer plus loin pour exercer des activités bancaires ordinaires. Le conseil des Comtés unis de Prescott et Russell commencera à faire pression auprès desmunicipalitésmembres de l’Ontario pour obtenir une résolution visant à convaincre le gouvernement fédéral d’installer une «banque postale», afin de permettre aux résidents ruraux ne pouvant se déplacer d’effectuer leurs opérations bancaires par l’entremise du bureau de Postes Canada. —photo Gregg Chamberlain

cial institutions are pushing the concept of online banking more and more with their customers. Barton observed that he is asked every time he goes to do his own personal banking whether he has ever considered online banking. “Call me old-fashioned,” Barton said, “but I like to talk to someone when I do my

(banking) business.” Mayor Pierre Leroux, of Russell Township, wondered whether postal banking was ne- cessary when a grocery store or other local business could install an ABM (automatic banking machine) for simple withdrawal and deposit transactions. “Some villages have nomore stores,” ob-

servedMayor Jeanne Charlebois of Hawkes- bury. “There is only the post office.” Counties council gave unanimous appro- val for administration to draft a resolution for the next UCPRmeeting, on postal banking, which counties council can then take to the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) for further lobbying action.

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