Weeks before Scotiabank decision: VP

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Scotiabank Maxville

It could be weeks before residents in three small communities in eastern Ontario find out if they will be able to bank within walking distance of their homes.

Karin Abgrall, Scotiabank district vice-president for the St. Lawrence Valley, told Seaway News in an interview the bank will take the next few weeks to determine a course of action following a wave of criticism from residents in Avonmore and Maxville at word their banks could close.

"We will take a look at all the information we have gathered," she said.

Residents in the two communities, as well as others in St. Isidore, are fuming because Scotiabank has plans to close their offices and consolidate banking in Casselman at a new facility.

Residents complain there will be a significant increase in travel - an hour or more roundtrip - and older customers find it difficult to get around, especially in the winter.

Abgrall said this is the first time the bank has held townhall-type meetings to gauge public reaction - which has been swift.

A demonstration is planned in Avonmore this weekend against the bank's closure. The gathering begins at noon.

Abgrall said while many in the effected communities believe the closures are all but assured, that is not the case.

"It's certainly not (an absolute) decision," she said, adding closures may "possibly" happen.

Organizations: Scotiabank, Seaway News

Geographic location: Avonmore, Eastern Ontario, Lawrence Valley Casselman

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