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Bell Bank gives Minnesota employees a bumper bonus, boosts charitable giving

The bank is celebrating reaching a financial milestone.

It'll be a happy Christmas for the hundreds of Minnesotans employed by Bell Bank, who will receive an increase in their annual bonus.

The Fargo-based bank, which has corporate offices in Golden Valley and bank branches across the state of Minnesota, announced bumper bonuses at its holiday party on December 1.

Each year, Bell Bank workers are given an annual bonus that is based upon bank performance.

However, this year full-time workers will be given an extra $2,500 on top of their regular bonus, while part-time workers will receive an extra $1,000.

The bonus boost is coming, the company told BMTN, in honor of the bank's "growth and success in reaching the milestone of $5 billion in assets."

The bank has more than 1,200 employees nationwide, of which over 500 are in Minnesota.

But that's not the only thing that's increasing. Bell has also announced it will be giving each employee extra money to donate as part of its popular Pay It Forward campaign.

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This sees full and part-time employees given a sum, usually $1,000 and $500 respectively, to hand out to individuals, families and organizations in need.

This year, full-time workers will get to dish out $2,500 to the needy and worthy, with part-timers getting $1,000.

The Pay It Forward program was launched in 2007 by CEO Michael Solberg, who was inspired by Oprah Winfrey's Pay It Forward project.

Since then, more than $12 million has been given out by Bell Bank employees to causes and people of their choice.

A Bell spokesperson wasn't able to confirm whether the recent corporate tax cuts played a role in the increased bonuses/Pay It Forward funds, but said she doesn't believe that's the case.

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