Georgia leads the nation in bank failures, but the state is leaving key bank examiner positions vacant because of a tight budget. And there's no sign the jobs will be filled anytime soon.
An Associated Press review shows that among states with the highest number of bank failures, only Georgia has reduced oversight.
Since Oct. 1, 2000, 40 banks in Georgia have collapsed. Over the last two years, 6 Georgia bank examiner positions have become vacant and haven't been filled.
One Atlanta-based banking lawyer says if Georgia had spent adequate money on banking oversight, the present crisis in the banking system might not have been so strong.
Several other states with numerous bank failures have not reduced oversight positions.