Loan lawsuit
3:12 pm
Mon January 14, 2013

JCC, Bank Of America Settle Loan Lawsuit

Bank of America and the Jewish Community Center in St. Louis have settled a federal breach of contract lawsuit over loans the agency used to upgrade its facilities.

Bank of America sued in March 2012, alleging that the JCC failed to make $4 million in payments in an effort to pressure the bank into better terms on a $45 million loan. The bank said there was no evidence the “J” was unable to pay the loan on the original terms, noting that it had repaid all other lenders in a timely fashion. The agency disputed that point.

Credit (via Flickr/s_falkow)

Terms of the settlement, which was apparently reached Friday, were confidential, but the Center's president and CEO, Lynn Wittels, says they mean the agency no longer has to be concerned about its viability.

She says the JCC is thrilled to put the legal battle in the past.

"We actually have been very fortunate that the people who are members of the 'J', and participate in our programs, and our financial supporters really see all the good that the agency does in the community," Wittels said. "We saw very little impact from the initial lawsuit."

Wittels says the two sides developed the framework of the settlement during court-ordered mediation.

Attorney General Chris Koster intervened in the suit on behalf of the JCC. A spokeswoman says Koster helped in settlement negotiations and supports the final version.

Follow Rachel Lippmann on Twitter: @rlippmann