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Bank Protest Prompts Response from Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo reportedly requested police protection from Tuesday's protest by the Mid Peninsula American Dream Council. A spokesperson from the bank sent Patch a written response to the group's accusations as well.

Tuesday, on Woodside Road near the branches of three major banks - Citibank, Wells Fargo and Bank of America - accusing the banks of "not paying their fair share of the country's taxes."

Gary Graham, a spokesperson for MPADC, said approximately 30 people turned out to participate in Tuesday's protest. As the group stood along Woodside Road near the three banks, Graham said many people honked their support as they drove by.

According to Graham, Wells Fargo in particular took offense to the group's accusations and requested police protection from the protesters, who were attempting to hand the branch managers of the three banks a "giant bill" for what they believe is the "fair share of America's taxes" the banks owe.

"Bank of America and Wells Fargo locked us out, so our presenters slipped the 'bills' through the door," MPADC spokesperson Gary Graham told Patch after the protest. "Three of our 'tax presenters' did reach a manager at Citibank though, and delivered our 'bill.'"

Graham said he felt the police presence requested by Wells Fargo was unnecessary, since their protest was peaceful.

"One of our members spoke with the officers as she left the premises and asked if they really thought we were a threat to anything," Graham said. "The officers replied that they knew we were not a problem, which is why they had been mostly standing in the supermarket parking lot across the street, away from the protest."

Ruben Pulido, a spokesperson from Wells Fargo, sent Patch the following statement in an e-mail following Tuesday's protest:

"Wells Fargo fulfills its corporate tax obligations.  Wells Fargo paid nearly $4 billion in federal and state corporate income taxes in 2011. And paid an additional $2 billion in 2011 for employment-related taxes, property taxes, and other taxes.”

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Rex April 20, 2012 at 05:12 PM
Roger Harris describes the situation very well. It's the corporations that are in charge of our country. As long as we keep reelecting the wealthy incumbents, nothing will change.
Roger Brina April 20, 2012 at 05:52 PM
The banks' over-the-top behavior is unfortunately all too common. Occupy Redwood City has been protesting at banks repeatedly in Redwood City, and every single time we have been completely peaceful and non-violent. And yet despite this fact the banks shut down on us and request police presence consistently even though the police themselves admit that we are in no way a threat to anyone. They have even hired extra private security, which is an indicator of how much money these banks have to waste when they can afford to contract out to private security firms to handle a small gang of peaceful, non-violent protesters. As a matter of fact, two of our Occupiers have filed police reports after being assaulted by Chase Bank employees (one a loan officer, the other a security guard). If anyone should be requesting police protection, it's the protesters, not the banks.
4freedom April 20, 2012 at 10:14 PM
I must agree with Roger, I have been to peaceful protests when senior citizens were present. And the chase bank employees got very confrontational with the elderly and even physically violent.
Barb Valley April 21, 2012 at 04:17 AM
Roger & Rex - Large corporations may well have lobbied and authored legislation but it's Congress, our Legislative Branch, who have provoided their tax breaks. Campaign Reform is necessary since it's those same large corporations making huge campqign contributions to keep those corporation-friendly incumbants in office.
Barb Valley April 21, 2012 at 04:26 AM
Roger, I understand ORC has always been peaceful and non-violent in their local protests. I also understand why the banks would lock you out and even request a police presence. There is always the chance some non-ORC affiliated individual could create problems. I'm sure bank mgt want their customers and staff safe.

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