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Plan calls for closing 16 First Niagara and seven Key branches in area

Sixteen area First Niagara Financial Group branches and seven area KeyCorp branches would close as part of Key’s plan to acquire First Niagara, according to a plan submitted to federal regulators.

Overall, the plan calls for closing 70 First Niagara branches in New York state, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Massachusetts, and 36 Key branches in New York state. The banks submitted their plan to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

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KeyCorp agrees to add 500 new jobs upstate, limit position cuts to 250

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The planned closings are separate from the 18 First Niagara branches in Erie and Niagara counties that Northwest Bancshares plans to buy in a previously announced deal to satisfy anti-competitive concerns.

Key is awaiting approval from the Federal Reserve to acquire First Niagara, and hopes to complete the deal in the third quarter. The branch-closing plan needs the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency’s approval, and the closings wouldn’t happen until at October at the earliest.

Key has pledged to cut no more than 250 positions statewide after acquiring First Niagara, part of a deal worked out between Key and Sen. Charles Schumer and Rep. Brian Higgins that was announced over the weekend. But the agreement calls for sparing branch employees, by offering them a full-time and comparable position in the same region after the acquisition is completed.

The agreement says Key will have at least the same number of jobs in upstate New York – 6,117 – as the two separate banks have today.

Key has also agreed to add at least 500 to 600 jobs in upstate New York through 2018, and is likely to add 300 to 400 additional jobs in 2019 and 2020. Key has already pledged to make Larkinville – First Niagara’s home base – its Northeast regional headquarters.

Reductions in the two banks’ combined branch network were expected, but specifics had not been disclosed until now.

The 16 area First Niagara branches that would close in October are:

5075 Broadway, Depew,

401 Central Ave., Dunkirk.

649 Main St., East Aurora,

4939 Lake Shore Road, Hamburg,

6520 Webster Road, Orchard Park,

3049 Orchard Park Road, Orchard Park,

1726 Hertel Ave., Buffalo,

2853 Delaware Ave., Kenmore,

5190 Sheridan Drive, Williamsville,

827 Hopkins Road, Williamsville,

8503 Main St., Williamsville,

1251 Union Road, West Seneca,

325 Orchard Park Road, West Seneca,

665 North French Road, Amherst.

707 Fairmount Ave., Jamestown.

1 E. Main St., Falconer.

Seven area Key branches would be close. Set to close in November is:

2345 Union Road, West Seneca.

The six Key branches closing on future dates to be determined are:

219 E. Main St., Batavia.

1219 French Road, Cheektowaga.

4248 Delaware Ave., Tonawanda.

8301 Niagara Falls Blvd., Niagara Falls.

501 W. Fifth St., Jamestown.

5740 South Transit Road, Lockport.

email: mglynn@buffnews.com