Sussex County Delaware

M&T Bank to Stay
Open in Millsboro
Sussex County Economy ...

But 165 Jobs Will
Be Lost in Facility

While M&T Bank will not be closing the former Allfirst Financial offices in Millsboro as feared, the company will be cutting 165 jobs from its customer-service call center and consumer loan processing facility in the central Sussex County community.

Delaware Gov. Ruth Ann Minner and Allfirst Financial Chairman and CEO Eugene Sheehy announced on Monday, Jan. 13, 2003, that the facility will remain open after months of concern that it would be shut down following Allfirst's acquistion by M&T Bank in spring 2002.

Minner said the state will pay M&T Bank $1,700 for each of the 455 jobs the company will keep in Millsboro for a total cost of $765,000.

The decision saves 455 of the 620 current jobs at the company's customer-service call center and consumer-loan processing facility, and while the saved jobs are good news, the lost jobs are not for a town that has seen Ames Department Store and Acme Supermarkets close their doors in the past year.

"I am disappointed that there had to be any loss of jobs, but we are thankful we did not lose them all," said Minner. "In fact, it is being announced today that the state of Maryland will lose more than 900 jobs as a result of this merger."

Following the announcement of the acquisition and concern about the Millsboro facility's future, Gov. Minner met and spoke with Sheehy a number of times. She also met with M&T Bank Chairman Robert Wilmers as officials planned the consolidation of the two companies.

"Today's news is welcome and arises as a result of a partnership between Gov. Minner and M&T Bank, and I would like to thank the Governor and her economic development team for making it possible for M&T to continue to play a vital role in Millsboro, in Sussex County and in Delaware," said Sheey, who will become chairman and CEO of M&T Bank's Mid-Atlantic division after the merger.

"We have found Millsboro to be an excellent facility for almost 20 years. We've had a good experience with both the staff and the facility and we look forward to growing the business there in the future."

Delaware Economic Development Office Director Judy McKinney-Cherry said the closure of the entire Millsboro bank facility would have meant a loss of nearly 200 jobs in the surrounding area that support and serve the facility and a loss of nearly $17 million a year in salary income.

"The reduction in gross state product would be around $57 million," McKinney-Cherry said. "Thanks to our Governor's steadfast support of economic development issues and the teamwork of our business development unit, we were able to keep one of Sussex County's largest employers in Delaware."

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