Your choice of bank is your vote on where your money goes. Are your hard-earned deposits reinvested back into our local community? Or are they sent off to a banking hub in another state or halfway around the world?
As more consumers realize the benefits of keeping their money local, I encourage you to think about how banking locally right here in South Dakota can go a long way in helping our local community thrive.
For example, when you deposit funds into a community bank, you can trust that your money is being redistributed back into your hometown in the form of loans to fellow residents and entrepreneurs. This cannot be said for megabanks. Who knows where that money is going or what it’s powering?
As a local community banker for over 40 years, I see the positive power of community banking play out every day. Community Banks have the privilege of serving South Dakota’s residents and their families by making loans that help them buy a home, pay for a vehicle, or send a child to college—whatever it is, we’re there and happy to lend a hand. We also have the honor of serving many of our town’s small businesses through loans to help them get started, grow and succeed.
We’ve also served many of the local farms and agricultural enterprises that have been part of our community for generations. And we’re working with the next generation of entrepreneurs to help launch their exciting ideas and bring our community into the future. This is local money at work—a symbiotic relationship between bank and community that makes sense.
During April, which is Community Banking Month, I encourage you to think about where you bank and how your money has the power to make a meaningful impact on our community. From local farms to craftsmen to startups, banking locally with a community bank connects you to your community and your neighbors and gives everyone a stake in its financial success.
Making our community better and stronger is something that we all have a stake in. We hope you will join us by banking local and continuing to make South Dakota thrive and prosper for years to come!
About Representative Hugh Bartels
Hugh Bartels serves as Chairman of the Independent Community Bankers of South Dakota (ICBSD) and is a member of the board of Directors at Reliabank Dakota where he recently retired as Bank President. He was elected to the South Dakota House of Representatives in 2016 and serves on the appropriations committee, Hugh’s past civic involvement includes serving the Watertown School Board for 9 years, including as President for 2 years, past Chairman of the Watertown Chamber of Commerce, Past President of Kiwanis, member of Prairie Lakes Foundation Board of Directors, treasurer of his church. and past chairman of the the South Dakota Investment Council.
Hannah Merritt, Marketing & Public Relations
Please contact us on issues related to consumer and small business lending, federal regulatory issues, the economy, housing, tax policy, and other financial services topics. We will provide you with information from the community banker perspective including interviews with ICBSD board members to help you with your story.