UPDATE: Santa Barbara Airport officials said United Airlines flights connecting through Los Angeles International Airport were no longer grounded as of 2 p.m. on Nov. 1. However, they still asked passengers to contact their airlines for questions about disruptions. Earlier Story: All United Airlines flights between the Santa Barbara Airport and Los Angeles International Airport Read More →
Longtime Santa Barbara banker Joanne Funari has stepped down from Business First Bank to join the Bank of Santa Barbara as chief operating officer.
Funari previously served as regional director and president of Business First, a division of Heritage Oaks Bancorp based in downtown Santa Barbara.
Montecito hotel magnate Pat Nesbitt could lose as many as half of his Embassy Suites properties under a recently approved bankruptcy reorganization plan.
Nesbitt and his company, Windsor Capital Group, parked a portfolio of eight Embassy Suites hotels in Chapter 11 bankruptcy, listing more than $100 million in debts, after being unable to work out a deal with his servicer, New York-based Torchlight Investors. Nesbitt’s Embassy Suites properties in Lompoc and San Luis Obispo were not involved in the case.
Court documents filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Santa Barbara indicate the eight hotels in the bankruptcy are now slated to go to the auction block.
With its $56.4 million purchase of another Central Coast bank, Heritage Oaks Bancorp lays the foundation to build the region’s next big community banking franchise and emerges as the dominant player in the market.
Paso Robles-based Heritage Oaks said Oct. 21 that it is buying Mission Community Bank, based in San Luis Obispo, in a cash-and-stock deal expected to close in the first quarter of 2014. The combined bank would have $1.5 billion in assets, making it the largest bank based in the Tri-Counties.
Despite dire warnings that future pension costs could cause a fiscal meltdown for tri-county governments, credit ratings for Santa Barbara, Ventura and San Luis Obispo county bonds remain mostly unaffected by looming gaps in their retirement obligation funding.
Standard & Poor’s, a leading rating agency, ranks all three counties near the top of a scale that spans from its highest AAA to C, the lowest rating a bond can have without defaulting. Santa Barbara County carries the agency’s second highest AA-plus designation. Ventura County is assigned a slightly lower AA-rating this year and SLO County is ranked AA-minus.
“We were drawn [to the property] by the proximity to the Amtrak station and lower State Street, but really the hostel is in its own class for budget-savvy kinds of travelers and international students,” said Jared Filippone, a vice president with Capitoline Properties, which recently purchased the hostel.
Developer Westar Associates has broken ground on Hollister Village, a mixed-use project in Goleta that will include 266 apartments and a shopping center.
After years in the planning process that included fierce opposition from some neighborhood activists, Costa Mesa-based Westar secured approvals for the project at Hollister Avenue and Glen Annie Road in October 2012.