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Senator's property not foreclosed on
Parties working on deal, Murphy says
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Forsyth County News

Deputy of the Year

By: Jim Dean

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Jack Murphy said he was never worried about losing a 1-acre property in downtown Cumming to foreclosure.

The District 27 Republican state senator from Cumming, who also serves as Senate Banking Committee chairman, said he and the property’s holders are working out a deal on the site, which was scheduled to be auctioned Tuesday.

"I didn’t expect the foreclosure to occur," Murphy said. "They got a hold of us and said … that they’re not foreclosing on it. So like I’ve said all along, we’re going to work something out on it."

The tract at 304 Tribble Gap Road was purchased from former state Rep. Tom Knox, who runs his law firm on the neighboring site.

Murphy has previously said the plan was to build office buildings on the property, but contracts fell through and the real estate market slumped.

To buy the property, Murphy took out a $228,000 loan with Integrity Bank in 2006, when he was still serving on its board of directors.

The bank failed in 2008 and was taken over by Regions Bank.

Murphy and seven others with Integrity are the target of a $70 million FDIC lawsuit over Integrity’s failure.

He and three other former directors have denied the FDIC’s accusations of negligence, gross negligence and breach of fiduciary duties resulting in the bank’s closing.

Instead, in a legal response to the charges, they argue that evidence will show it was the FDIC’s "lax oversight and arbitrary demands" that caused the bank to fail.

The FDIC suit is ongoing.

As for the property on Tribble Gap, Murphy said he looks forward to working out a deal with the current holders, MultiBank 2009-1 CRE Venture LLC.

"We’ll get something the parties will agree too," he said. "They’re willing to do that and we’re willing to work with them so this should be the end of that."