One of Northeast Georgia’s best-known community banks failed Friday, Jan. 29. Community Bank & Trust was taken over by state and federal regulators and the bank’s assets sold to SCBT, N.A. of Orangeburg, SC.
CB&T is based in Cornelia, GA, and has 36 branches, many in Northeast Georgia, including Jackson and Barrow counties. The firm pioneered supermarket banking in the area. It had assets of over $1.2 billion.
Officials said the bank would continue to operate under the CB&T name, but depositors would automatically become depositors of SCBT.
“This evening and over the weekend, depositors of Community Bank and Trust can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards,” the FDIC said in a news release. “Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.”
Officials said the bank’s failure would cost the Deposit Insurance Fund some $354.5 million.
The bank’s demise comes amid continuing real estate and foreclosure problems in the area. Although it is the largest local bank failure to date, most had expected the FDIC action to happen. The bank had been under a scathing cease and desist order since last summer and its bank rating status had fallen to the lowest level in recent months.
Customers who have questions about Friday’s transaction can call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-430-7974. The phone number will be operational Friday evening until 9:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time (EST); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EST; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., EST; and thereafter from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., EST. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC's Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/cbt-cornelia.html.