Business & Economy

Merchants Bank laying off 76 at headquarters

(This story was updated March 13 at 2:25 p.m. with a statement from the company.)

Merchants Bank will lay off 76 employees by the end of May, according to the Vermont Department of Labor.

The people work at the Merchants Bank headquarters on Kennedy Drive in South Burlington, Labor Commissioner Lindsay Kurrle said Monday.

The bank filed a notice of the impending layoffs with the Labor Department under the state’s Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification, or WARN, Act, according to Kurrle.

She said the headquarters is not being shut down, and the job losses are a result of overlapping responsibility, now that Merchants is merging with the New York company Community Bank Systems. That merger was announced in October.

“I’m sorry for these employees that they will be laid off as a result of the consolidation, but the Department of Labor is very much committed to working with all of the folks who are affected to help find employment for them,” Kurrle said.

She said the department held two rapid response sessions in February, and 52 employees showed up to find out about their rights after being laid off. She said most affected employees have likely been notified.

Merchants Bank issued a statement saying more than 200 of its employees are being retained in the merger. The total number of people who will be employed by Community Bank is 2,800, the statement said.

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“We recognize the support and contributions of those impacted by this merger,” the statement said. “We are working to ensure that these individuals receive proper severance benefits, job retraining, re-employment services and other assistance.”

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Erin Mansfield

About Erin

Erin Mansfield covers health care and business for VTDigger. From 2013 to 2015, she wrote for the Rutland Herald and Times Argus. Erin holds a B.A. in Economics and Spanish from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where she also attended journalism school. Erin has worked in public and private schools across Vermont and interned in the U.S. Senate. She has been published by the Columbia Journalism Review and the Society of Professional Journalists. She grew up in Killington.

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