Regional West Australians will have the chance to voice their opinion later this year on bank closures across the State. The Federal Rural and Regional Affairs committee will hold inquires across towns in rural WA between July and September to receive public feedback on the issue. It comes after regional Australia has seen hundreds of bank branches close down due to cost cutting and an increase in online banking. The host towns have not been selected yet, but Shire of Carnamah chief executive Rob Paull welcomes the idea after the town’s only bank, a Westpac branch, closed in February. “The Shire of Carnamah would be delighted if it was selected as a venue for some of the hearings in Western Australia,” he said. “The hearings are very important for all residents and businesses to be able to put forward a comment to the committee, to ensure that there is an appropriate means by which banks deal with communities when they are seeking to close branches.” Many regional residents that have banks close down are stuck having to travel a great distance if they require in-person banking. “Since it closed, the community have had to travel about a 230 kilometre return trip to the nearest branch in Moora,” Mr Paull said. “We haven’t had people knocking on our door saying it’s impacted them, but we do know just by word of mouth that people have had to travel to Moora to get bank details updated.” While Commonwealth Bank put branch closures on hold for the Federal-State inquiry, Westpac and many others did not follow suit.