WTB Financial Corp., the Spokane parent of Washington Trust Bank, has received an $89.1 million infusion from the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Small Business Lending Fund.
Washington Trust is one of five community banks based in Washington state to receive money through that federal lending fund and the only Spokane-based bank to do so.
In all, those five banks received a total of $124.4 million, the Treasury Department reports.
Jack Heath, president and chief operating officer of Washington Trust, says, "The hope is we'll be able to make more loans to those key small businesses and create more job growth."
Heath says the bank expects to lend that money over the course of the next 4 1/2 years. Generally speaking, those loans will be made to companies with $50 million or less in annual revenues that are borrowing $10 million or less.
Types of loans will include commercial and industrial, owner-occupied real estate, and agriculture, Heath says. It won't be used for investor-owned real estate.
The Small Business Lending Fund is a $30 billion program established under Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 and is designed to increase the availability of commercial credit.
Separately, Washington Trust repaid completely the $115.5 million it received from the Treasury Department under the TARP capital program in January 2009.
The bank has said those funds helped it to keep credit available to small businesses during the economic downturn.
In addition to repaying the TARP money early, Washington Trust paid a total of $15.7 million in dividends to the U.S. Treasury.
Founded in Spokane in 1902, Washington Trust has nearly $4 billion in assets and 40 branches in Washington, Idaho, and Oregon. It employs about 750 people in all.
Subscribe today to our free E-Newsletters!SUBSCRIBE