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ASK THE EXPERT: Financial Inclusion through Affordable and Safe Banking Products

Financial inclusion is the accessibility of useful and affordable financial products and services to all individuals and businesses. Financial institutions have made strides in advancing these practices, most recently in the past few years, and share a commitment to helping provide equal opportunity access to financial services.

In alignment with this commitment, Solvay Bank is pleased to announce that its New Leaf Checking product was officially certified by the national Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund) as meeting the Bank On National Account Standards (2023-2024). The national safe account Standards, co-created by consumer advocates, leading national nonprofit organizations, civic leaders, and other financial institutions, designate both core and strongly recommended features that ensure low cost, high functionality, and consumer safety.

Key features of Solvay Bank’s New Leaf Checking include a monthly maintenance fee of $3 that is waived with direct deposit, no overdraft or nonsufficient fund fees, no minimum balance requirements, the ability to pay bills and make purchases. New Leaf Checking is available in all of Solvay Bank‘s 9 branches across Onondaga County.

“Solvay Bank joined the Bank On movement to ensure that safe and affordable financial services are available for all,” said Michele Fernandez, VP Enterprise Risk Manager & CRA Officer at Solvay Bank. “Offering our New Leaf checking account provides opportunity to individuals and families in our community looking to build a financial foundation, demonstrating our commitment to financial inclusion.”

With the addition of Solvay Bank’s New Leaf Checking, there are now over 400 other Bank On certified accounts offered at financial institutions in over 46,000 branches across the county. Learn more about Solvay Bank’s commitment to financial inclusion through its New Leaf Checking account at

The information reflected in this article was current at the time of publication. This information will not be modified or updated for any subsequent changes, if any.