GLEN ALLEN, Va., April 26, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Community Bankers Trust Corporation, the holding company for Essex Bank (NYSE Amex: BTC), announced today that the Company and the Bank have mutually entered into a written agreement with the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond and the Bureau of Financial Institutions of Virginia's State Corporation Commission. Under the terms of the agreement, the Company and the Bank have committed to take certain actions to strengthen the Company's and Bank's risk profile and operations and maintain effective control over and supervision of major operations and activities, with a focus on the Bank's credit risk management and credit administration activities.
The agreement arises from concerns identified during recent regulatory examinations and is based on the supervisory findings from an examination that the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond conducted in the third quarter of 2010. The Company has anticipated entering into the agreement since that examination, as it has previously disclosed, and thus undertook specific actions in expectation of its requirements. As a result, the Company believes that the agreement does not reflect the numerous corrective actions that the Company and the Bank have already taken in response to those concerns. Such actions include, as previously reported, the selection and hiring of a permanent Chief Executive Officer, pending regulatory approval, and a new Chief Credit Officer in the first quarter of 2011 and the numerous remediation steps that they, other members of management and the board of directors of the Company and the Bank have taken.
Rex L. Smith, III, the selected President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company and the Bank, stated, "None of the issues that the agreement identifies are new to us, and we have been addressing these issues in order to meet the common goal that we have with our regulators to strengthen our operations and maintain our financial soundness. We continue to have a very constructive working relationship with our regulators, and we have coordinated closely with them as we address our regulatory issues. Our improvements and enhancements will take some time to yield results, but we have the right people in the right positions to accomplish this."
Mr. Smith added, "We believe that our first formal submission of plans to improve aspects of our operations to our regulators in June 2011, as required by the written agreement, will clearly reflect the progress that we have made since our regulatory examination last summer, particularly in the management oversight and credit risk management areas. As much of the agreement deals with oversight of the credit areas and risk management, we have hired a new Chief Credit Officer, appointed a new Senior Credit Officer and a new Chief Special Assets Officer and established a new Board-level Credit Committee to provide the proper oversight of these areas. In addition, the strategic plan and budget that we adopted in 2010 outlines our path back to profitability through better risk management. We have always believed that these steps are critical in our return to profitability, as we continue to work through issues related to asset quality and uncertainty in the real estate markets and general economy in our market areas."The agreement does not impose any specific capital, liquidity or earnings requirements on the Company or the Bank or any restrictions on the products and services that the Bank offers to its customers. In addition, the agreement does not impose any fines or penalties on the Company or the Bank.