As part of a national belt-tightening effort, Bank of America is laying off about 30 people in its Belfast operation, which is one of the three largest employers in Waldo County. Credit: Olivier Douliery | MCT

Bank of America has cut about 30 people from its Belfast operation, citing a changing marketplace and the need to adjust its workforce accordingly.

“We have made the decision to consolidate some of the work performed in Belfast to other sites,” said Jumana Bauwens, a bank spokesperson.

The layoffs were immediate and took place Feb. 27.

Bauwens said the impacted workers were in a small group that handled calls from financial centers that needed answers to customer questions.

She said the bank will provide career counseling to those unable to find new work at the bank. Affected employees are eligible for severance.

One of the people laid off, who asked to remain anonymous, said the Belfast location has a call center and credit and marketing activities, and is hiring in other departments. The person added that the severance offered by the bank is good.

Bank of America has 1,100 employees in Maine, with about 800 in Waldo County, making it one of the three largest private employers in the county, along with Athena Health and Waldo County General Hospital, according to the Maine Department of Labor.

In June 2013 fewer than 20 people at the Belfast call center were laid off in a belt-tightening move. The child-care center was closed soon afterward.

Bank of America bought the Belfast operation from credit card lender MBNA in 2006. The bank employed 1,700 people in Belfast at that time, but it has trimmed staff across its U.S. operations in recent years to eliminate redundancies as the market changed.

For example, Bauwens said, the bank has trimmed mortgage staff as the number of foreclosures decreased.

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