Norfolk-based Bank of the Commonwealth was seized by regulators after it failed to improve its capital levels in the face of heavy losses on real estate loans. Southern Bank and Trust Co., of Mount Olive, N.C., assumed the deposits and about $924.3 million in assets. The FDIC and Southern Bank and Trust will share losses on $798.2 million in loans. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
Bay Electric Co., a Newport News-based contractor, laid off 30 workers, citing a decline in construction projects from the government and commercial sectors. (Daily Press)
Colonna’s Shipyard, a Norfolk marine repair and services company, received a $17 million contract from the Army for repairs and modifications for the SP4 James A. Loux, a logistics support vessel. The work is expected to take about six months. (The Virginian-Pilot)
Communications Test Design Inc., a service provider for communications companies, will invest $2 million in a facility in Chesapeake, hiring 50 workers. The company will repair residential cable boxes for Cox Communications.
Dominion Virginia Power, a Richmond-based energy provider, will close its coal-fired power plant in Chesapeake by 2016 and one of its two units in Yorktown by 2015, because of expected tighter environmental regulations. The shutdowns could mean the loss of 145 jobs in Chesapeake and of a number of others in York County over the next five years. (Daily Press)
Edward Jones Investments, a St. Louis-based brokerage firm, plans to open 16 branches in the Hampton Roads region during the next four years. It has 36 branches in the region now. (The Virginian-Pilot)
Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc., a major shipbuilder based in Newport News, has disclosed a federal civil investigation into allegations that its former parent — defense giant Northrop Grumman Corp. — used Hurricane Katrina relief funds to improperly recover shipbuilding costs. Huntington Ingalls said it is cooperating with the investigation and denies the allegations.
Metro Machine Corp., a Norfolk provider of ship repair services to the Navy, was bought by General Dynamics Corp., a Falls Church defense contractor. Metro has 400 employees and has supported fleet services since 1972. (Washington Business Journal)
The Smithfield-Luter Foundation gave Christopher Newport University an unrestricted gift of $5 million. It was the foundation’s second $5 million gift to CNU. In addition, C. Larry Pope, president and CEO of Smithfield Foods Inc., and his wife, Mary Pope, gave the university $1 million toward construction of a university chapel. (The Virginian-Pilot)
After a full calendar month of collecting fares, The Tide, Norfolk’s light-rail transit system, was averaging 5,056 daily weekday trips. Hampton Roads Transit had projected that 2,900 trips would be taken each weekday the year the rail opens, rising to 7,130 daily rides by 2030. (The Virginian-Pilot)
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