137 year era of Wilber National Bank comes to a close

By EMMA WRIGHT

ONEONTA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Wilber Corp., parent company of Wilber National Bank, based in Oneonta, and serving a wide area of customers throughout eight counties, merged with the Dewitt-based Community Bank Inc., on Friday.

On Monday morning, all Wilber National Bank branches will re-open as Community Banks.

"Our board of directors felt the merger was good for Wilber shareholders," Bank CFO Joseph Sutaris said.

The merger is a bittersweet ending of a 137 year era. Wilber National Bank was founded in 1874 by the Wilber family - farmers in the Town of Milford. Over the decades, the business has expanded to the local bank it is today - with branches in Oneonta, Milford, Schenevus, Otego, Morris, Cooperstown, Norwich, Sidney, Delhi, Walton, Downsville, Fleischmanns, Johnson City, Cobleskill, Boiceville, Halfmoon, and Cicero.

63 layoffs were part of the merger, but bank officials say many local jobs were also saved.

"It is sad to see something go after all these years, but as long as the people I see face to face everyday are still there, I'm okay with that," said customer Bill Youngs.

Wilber Bank said they have tried to make the transition as seamless as possible for customers. Customers will not have to get new checks or debit cards until their current ones expire. Wilber said all ATMs will be up and running this weekend.

Wilber said all customers will have to sign-up for online banking with Community Bank on Monday.

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