A Mount Clemens town commissioner and former banking professional blasted Huntington Bank for refusing to provide coin counting services at county seat.
Commissioner Glenn Voorhess called the bank “extremely unprofessional” because the institution would not provide a service to collect, calculate and deposit city currency in municipal parking lots and the Dial-A-Ride service.
The service was previously provided to county headquarters by TCF Bank, which merged with Huntington last summer.
“I think TCF / Huntington’s treatment of the town of Mount Clemens has been extremely unprofessional,” Voorhess said at a committee meeting earlier this month.
The public criticism was the latest salvo from Mount Clemens executives, who say the bank merger has created a “series of problems” for city departments.
When asked about a response by the Macomb Daily, Huntington staff said they were reviewing the situation.
“We are aware of the city’s frustration and are working with them on this issue and the overall transition to Huntington National Bank,” spokesman Randi Berris said in an email.
The issue was raised at the November 1 committee meeting as the administration reported continuing difficulties with Huntington.
Commissioners found that a manager was on the phone for four hours with a call center trying to resolve the coin situation, a move Voorhess called “totally inappropriate”.
Voorhess, who retired after a 25-year career with the former First National Bank of Mount Clemens, pointed out that Mount Clemens represents an annual account of $ 25 million for TCF / Huntington. He said the merger proves that “bigger is not better” in some cases.
“When I was in the banking industry, we were grinding our teeth to have a $ 25 million account deposit in your branch,” he said.
According to City Manager Don Johnson, the city’s finance department was advised by Huntington to contract an armored car service to pick up coins at city hall, count, pack and deposit the money on the city account.
The proposed process would take two to three days before city accounts are credited and could cost Mount Clemens up to $ 5,000 per year in additional service charges.
Instead, the administration made arrangements for Comerica Bank to process coin deposits. Municipal staff
will deliver the bags of coins to Comerica Bank on Harrington Street and Groesbeck Highway and the bank will process the deposit within 36 hours. The city will transfer the funds to Huntington before
the end of the month.
Johnson said the city is actively looking to move its banking operations elsewhere, but so far it hasn’t had much luck.
Mayor Laura Kropp also mentioned a social media thread criticizing the town for not supporting a ‘local’ business in Huntington due to a recent Macomb Daily article describing Mount Clemens’ frustrations with the bank.
According to the bank’s website, Huntington, based in Columbus, Ohio, has 920 branches in seven states in the Midwest.
“Huntington is by no means a local business,” said the mayor. “It’s a very big company and we are an insignificant little room to them.”
City boosters still upset In November 2013, Huntington closed the Main Street branch at Cass Avenue, a main intersection in the city, directly across from the Macomb County administration offices. At the time, the bank said the closure was part of an effort to streamline operations, noting that Huntington kept another branch on Gratiot Avenue in Mount Clemens.
City officials said the move allowed other businesses to gain a foothold in a key location, but the building remains vacant around eight years later.