Make us your home page

Bank of Florida drops its TARP application

Bank of Florida is withdrawing its application to receive about $40 million in TARP funds, joining critics of the federal government for changing terms of the bank bailout program.

Megabanks such as Citigroup, Bank of America and JPMorganChase have all signaled that they're eager to pay back funds garnered from the Troubled Asset Relief Program, getting out from government restrictions attached to the money involving bank management and executive compensation.

Several smaller banks have pulled TARP applications, but Bank of Florida chief executive Mike McMullen said he believes his institution is the first publicly traded bank in the state to withdraw.

"In the last couple of weeks, this has turned into a different scenario than we had originally thought," McMullen said.

For one, he said, TARP started out as seed money for healthy banks to be used in part to buy other banks, but it's morphed into a bailout of troubled banks. Bank of Florida had planned to use some of the money for acquisitions.

McMullen also was concerned the Treasury Department is imposing much stricter limits on the use of the funds and tracking whether money is spent on specific loans. "If the types of loans that meet that criteria are not in your market, it could be problematic."

And then there's the issue of executive compensation. Restricting pay for his executive management team, McMullen said, would make it hard for the bank to retain talented employees "especially if we're under those limitations and a competitor across the street isn't."

Based in Naples, Bank of Florida has about $1.5 billion in assets. Two of its 13 branches are in the bay area — one on Harbour Island and one in Clearwater.

The bank applied for TARP Nov. 14; so far, only eight of more than 80 Florida bank applications have been acted on.

"There was a huge backlog on the approval process," McMullen said. "We feel that has served us well."

Bank of Florida drops its TARP application 03/26/09 [Last modified: Thursday, March 26, 2009 10:22pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Seminole Heights restaurants face struggles amid killings, post-Irma

    Food & Dining

    SEMINOLE HEIGHTS — The neighborhood's hip circle of popular, well-regarded restaurants is feeling the squeeze in the wake of a recent killing spree. And the timing is rough.

    Ella's American Folk Art Cafe. Times files
  2. St. Pete-Clearwater holding food, supply drive for hurricane refugees


    CLEARWATER — St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport and Allegiant Air are holding a food and supply drive for the Hispanic Outreach Center in Pinellas County. The event, which will benefit refugees displaced by Hurricane Maria, will be held Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the airport at 14700 Terminal Blvd.

    St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport and Allegiant Air are hosting a food and supplies drive Tuesday for refugees displaced by Hurricane Maria. | [Times file photo]
  3. Tallest building in Pinellas County in search of a new name

    Real Estate

    ST. PETERSBURG — The name "Priatek" is gone from Pinellas County's tallest building, perhaps to be replaced by that of a much better-known company new to the Tampa Bay area.

    The Priatek name is off of downtown St. Petersburg's tallest building.
 [LARA CERRI  |   Times.  2015]
  4. Estuary wins pier design contest for the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway extension

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — And the winner is… Estuary.

    Voters overwhelmingly supported a pier design called Estuary for the $200-million extension of the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway in Tampa.
[Courtesy of AECOM]
  5. Amazon receives 238 proposals from places eager to become its 2nd headquarters


    NEW YORK — Amazon said Monday that it received 238 proposals from cities and regions in the United States, Canada and Mexico hoping to be the home of the company's second headquarters.

    Earlier this month, an Amazon employee gives her dog a biscuit as the pair head into a company building, where dogs are welcome, in Seattle. Amazon says it received 238 proposals from cities and regions hoping to be the home of the company's second headquarters. 
[AP Photo/Elaine Thompson]