By Sheila Duncan

Chairman Turner and Superintendent Mike Hill

Residents of Uniontown can help the banking situation by keeping their accounts at Cadence Bank until a new bank or credit union is established. This will show support from the community and help Federal, State, and Local officials in their efforts to resolve the banking issue. By keeping their accounts at Cadence Bank, residents will show their commitment to finding a solution and working towards a better banking environment in Uniontown.

Chairman Albert Turner recently held successful talks with banking officials and was informed that deposits are key to attracting a potential new partner for the Uniontown branch of Cadence Bank. Despite the closure of the Uniontown branch, Chairman Turner was quick to reassure customers that their accounts would remain insured by the FDIC up to $250,000.00. He added that churches, businesses, and individual accounts must stay with Cadence Bank until new banking arrangements are made available and saying they are confident that a new banking outfit will be ready to assume the Cadence Uniontown Branch before the July 31 deadline announced by Cadence Bank’s departure.

The first step in the action plan for the Uniontown Bank is to file an objection to Cadence’s decision to close the Uniontown branch. Chairman Turner has maintained that this action is detrimental to the banking system in rural America due to the lack of reliable internet service in rural Alabama and the lack of access to computers. If successful, this objection would keep the Uniontown branch open and expand its banking operations with the support of the Federal partnership. This option is very viable and could provide much needed banking services to rural residents.

The two banks Chairman Turner met with in Atlanta are Georgia Federal Bank and the Bank of North Georgia. Both are State Charter banks and are actively seeking new branches and opportunities to expand their reach. They are both in a good position to purchase the Uniontown and Fort Deposit banks, and Chairman Turner’s positive report is encouraging. It appears that both banks are interested in the purchase and will soon be in contact with Cadence.

State-chartered banks in Uniontown have been granted permission to install mobile teller machines, allowing customers to access all the banking services they would find in a brick-and-mortar bank. In addition, the Chairman and the Banking Superintendent of the state are actively seeking a credit union to provide financial services to Uniontown’s residents. They will be meeting with two potential candidates next week to discuss the possibility of setting up operations in the area. On Tuesday, May 9, 2023, the Perry County Commission took action to oppose the closure of Cadence Bank in Uniontown by passing a resolution to be included in a collection of resolutions and letters sent to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in Dallas, Texas.

The City Commission of Uniontown unanimously voted to pass a resolution citing the irreparable damage that would be caused by the closure of the only bank in the city, Cadence Bank. The resolution requested that the FDIC allow Cadence Bank to sell its deposits to another bank, preventing the city from becoming a banking desert. Commissioner Hudson offered to forward the resolution to the City of Uniontown and to work towards a joint resolution between the governing bodies. The Perry County Commission has decided to keep their funds with Cadence Bank, specifically their Payroll Reserve Account of $50,000.00.

Communications and execution between all parties is ongoing.

(Source: Albert Turner media)