UPDATE: Gerth says Chase postponing decision to close branch

Chase Bank_web_jal

JULIE LANE PHOTO The Chase Bank branch in the Center.

Supervisor Gary Gerth will meet with Chase Bank officials next week in an effort to turn around a decision made by the corporate office to close the Shelter Island branch. On Wednesday morning the supervisor said the bank has delayed closing the branch this year, which according to several sources had been slated to close in September.

Apparently the pressure bank officials have heard from Islanders and multiple requests for comments from the Reporter has had an effect.

Whether the supervisor will succeed in stopping the closing remains to be seen. Below is the original online story:

Corporate officials for J.P. Morgan Chase didn’t responded to calls and emails from the Reporter and no notices were sent to customers. But staff members in the local branch told friends who are bank customers that the office was scheduled to close. In addition, an Islander who manages a large account with Chase told the Reporter last week that a bank employee had said the branch here was pulling up stakes.

Councilwoman Amber Brach-Williams said while Bridgehampton National Bank (BNB), which would be the only remaining bank on the Island if Chase closes, provides excellent services to East Enders, but for people visiting the Island from other places, they would have to use BNB cash machines by paying a service fee..

There are other concerns, board members mentioned at the work session, including those of businesses that make night drops of cash and some seniors who can’t easily travel off-Island.

Mr. Gerth said Tuesday if he is unable to reverse the Chase decision, he would try to convince another national bank to open a branch here.

This is the second closing of a branch on the Island since Capital One closed on West Neck Road last fall. When Capital One announced its branch closing last year, some customers switched their accounts to Chase or BNB rather than to go off-Island. Capital One transferred some of its workers to branches on the North and South forks.

Whether that would be in the cards for local Chase bank employees is unclear.

Councilwoman Amber Brach-Williams said while Bridgehampton National Bank (BNB) provides excellent services to East Enders, people visiting the Island from other places can’t use BNB cash machines without a charge.

There are other concerns, board members mentioned at the work session, including those of businesses that make night drops of cash and seniors who can’t easily travel off-Island.

Mr. Gerth said if he is unable to reverse the Chase decision, he would try to convince another national bank to open a branch here.

This is the second closing of a bank branch on the Island since Capital One closed on West Neck Road last fall.

When Capital One announced its closing last year, some customers switched their accounts to Chase or BNB rather than to go off-Island. Capital One transferred some of its workers to branches on the North and South forks.

Whether that’s in the cards for local Chase bank employees is unclear.

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