April 28 will be the last day of operation for the local branch, and it’s the only N.E. Miss. closure.
Regions Bank customers in Baldwyn will have to either drive 18 miles to Tupelo for service or find another bank locally after April 28.
The bank system began notifying customers by letter this week that the Baldwyn branch will be ending operations in the spring. Baldwyn’s branch is the only Northeast Mississippi location caught in the closure. In all, Regions is planning to close 27 locations out of the more than 1,500 locations it operates.
“A careful review of our branch network has identified opportunities to consolidate certain locations,” Regions spokesman Jeremy King told The Baldwyn News. “These decisions are based on a variety of factors, including customer traffic, volume, profitability and more.”
King said the bank will be making efforts to make job opportunities available at other locations for affected employees. The closest Regions Bank branch to Baldwyn is at Barnes Crossing in Tupelo, a 15 to 20-minute drive from Baldwyn.
The news is not setting well with some local customers.
“I am not happy with Regions’ decision to close the Baldwyn branch,” said Suzanne Towery, a cosmotologist at Kuttin Korner in Baldwyn. “It will create inconvenience for many of their customers. As a business, we will need to drive to the Regions branch in the Barnes Crossing area to make our deposits, pay on loans, get change and for other banking needs.”
Towery also cited the time and gas costs for her to make the trip as reasons she was disappointed.
“I was absolutely shocked,” added Martha Bennet, who said she found out about the planned closure when she visited the Baldwyn branch on Jan. 19. “I use Regions in order ot make transactions with my son who lives in another state.”
Mary Hendrix and her daughter, Cassie Richey, both expressed disappointment in the decision.
“I am concerned about my debit and credit cards, CDs, and other transactions I make at our local branch,” Hendrix said. “The inconvenience of changing all my loans, CDs, savings and checking accounts to another bank is mind boggling.
King said Regions Bank customers will still be able to bank online and through the organization’s mobile app platform, but there are currently no plans to even leave an ATM in operation in Baldwyn.
The closure will leave Baldwyn-based FMBank as the only physical bank location providing service to the community.
Baldwyn Mayor Michael James said the news is disappointing, but he said the community is still blessed to have at least one financial services provider remaining here.
“We are always sorry to lose any business out of Baldwyn,” James said. “We will stay informed on the building and see what happens there, but we are blessed that we still have a very strong local bank here. There are many communities where there isn’t a local bank at all.”