So incensed are Bowra residents at the closure of the town's only bank branch that Councillor Rhonda Hoban was compelled to move a mayoral minute at Thursday's council meeting.
At the meeting it was resolved:
That council write to the Chair and General Manager of Bananacoast Community Credit Union (BCU) requesting the urgent reopening of the Bowraville store as the temporary closure is having significant negative impact on Bowraville businesses, is inconveniencing many loyal members from Bowraville and the surrounding rural area and is inconsistent with the promises made prior to the recent merger of BCU and the Western Australia Police and Nurses (P&N) Bank.
Cr Janine Reed supported the motion and added "somewhere along the line the Bananacoast Community Credit Union has lost the word 'community'".
"And it was formed by this community - the assets were built up by the members and the community."
Both Cr Reed and Cr Susan Jenvey expressed great concern for local businesses.
"It's pretty tough on local businesses in town to not have a bank - it would mean that people might come to Macksville or Nambucca to shop," Cr Jenvey said.
"And it's a great inconvenience for the Aboriginal Lands Council that has over 200 accounts with the bank.
"We never want to see our financial institutions close in rural towns - it's devastating."
"This closure is really hurting local businesses - bcu was the only bank in town and it was where businesses could easily bank and withdraw cash," he said.
"Some businesses have to change their hours, closing earlier, so they can get to the bank.
"Add to this the loss of those customers who don't bank electronically and shop where they can bank. This means people are leaving town to shop - and the resulting revenue downturn for businesses is very evident."
Mayor Hoban said the response bcu had given Guardian News when we enquired about the sudden closure merely added salt to the wound.
"People have also been upset about the media coverage in which bcu has indicated they feel their staff are not safe working in Bowraville," she said.
She gave an example of an elderly gentleman on a mobility scooter who had used the bank's service in town for decades without ever feeling threatened, and took umbrage with the assertion that the town was unsafe.
"And I'm concerned about older people not versed in internet banking - how are they going to access a bank directly," Cr John Ainsworth said.
Cr Ainsworth wholly supported the motion, but was unconvinced it would prove fruitful.
"I'm not holding my breath, but at least we could draw attention to it, and it may change something," he said.