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Old 01-15-2011, 02:13 AM   #1
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Default Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt...nt_718341.html
By Kim Leonard and Chris Togneri
PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Saturday, January 15, 2011

Steelers backup quarterback Charlie Batch is struggling with personal and business debt after years of working to redevelop properties in the Steel Valley, where he grew up.

Batch has filed for bankruptcy protection from creditors, listing $8.29 million in liabilities and $2.3 million in assets. Batch Development Co. Inc., of which he is the sole shareholder, had 25 properties turned over to a court-appointed receiver earlier this month after defaulting on a $1.15 million mortgage with Dollar Bank, court documents show.

"I can't comment," Batch said Friday, although he stressed that the matters have no impact on his Batch Foundation or on a former Homestead bakery that he is renovating. The foundation is a sports and education organization for children.

In its complaint, Dollar Bank said Batch has been managing the properties, but they haven't generated enough rent to pay the mortgage that dates to 2008. The bank said it anticipates selling the properties.

Attorney Joel M. Helmrich, who represents Dollar Bank, said Batch Development is cooperating. Most of the 25 properties are single-family homes, he said, and some are vacant.

Receiver Joseph F. Rodkey Jr. said at least one property has multiple dwelling units.

"Some need a little work, and others are in pretty good shape," the Oakmont attorney said, adding his role is to manage the properties as the bank's collateral.

Batch has expressed a desire in recent years to help revitalize Homestead, his hometown, and nearby communities while laying the groundwork for a real estate business.

One of Batch's biggest endeavors has been the conversion of the former Homestead Bakery Co. on Seventh Avenue into 16 loft-style apartments plus office space and six stores. The renovated building was to open in 2008, but appears far from ready. Construction workers yesterday removed a sidewalk in front of the large brick building, and steps leading to a main entrance have not been built.

The Homestead Bakery isn't one of the 25 properties in receivership, Rodkey said.

Batch's financial issues won't affect the Bakery project, said Dennis Davin, executive director of the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County.

"We will continue to work with Charlie. We have every confidence this project will be successful," Davin said. "The first apartment unit should be completed and rented by April, and the remaining units by June. The commercial storerooms should be completed by end of August."

In Homestead, residents and leaders said they were saddened to hear of Batch's difficulties.

"That's a shame because he's such a good man," said Councilman Sam Rizzardo, 63, who lives next door to one of Batch's properties, a single-home lot. "You hate to see something happen to him. He's always been here when we needed him."

Homestead Mayor Betty Esper has a banner hanging in front of her house reading "You're in Batch's Back Yard." At her office, she wore a Steelers sweater while praising the quarterback's involvement with local schools. Batch hosts basketball tournaments for kids, donates backpacks and organizes school field trips, among other deeds.

"I'm proud of Charlie we all are," she said. "He's always made us proud. ... Charlie comes across as being so clean cut. He's a guy who's never had bad publicity, until now. Never problems with girls, or with drinking. As many times as I've hugged him, I've never smelled liquor on him."

The community will rally around Batch if he needs help, Rizzardo said.

"For him, absolutely," Rizzardo said. "He's been such a special person here."

Davin said the Bakery project got $500,000 in financing from the state, plus other assistance. Dollar Bank provided a $1.6 million loan, and the redevelopment authority loaned $150,000.

PNC Financial Services Group's bank and mortgage businesses and three other companies are owed a little less than $1.55 million in secured debt, court documents filed Dec. 3 said. Dollar Bank's loan for Batch Development's rental properties is listed as a $1.1 million unsecured claim.

Batch calls himself a "seasonal contract employee" of the Steelers and notes his deal and the NFL Players Association's collective bargaining agreement expire at the end of the season.

His pay totaled $722,376, as of Dec. 3. Batch has been a Steeler for nine years.

Batch paid more than $3,000 in back property taxes in April after the Steel Valley School District threatened to take him to court.

On Eighth Avenue in Homestead, the borough's main business district, friends and fans said they will stand by Batch.

"What hasn't he done (for Homestead)?" said John Kubancek, 37, who played high school football with Batch. "He's just a really good person. I kind of feel bad now hearing this."
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Old 01-15-2011, 03:24 AM   #2
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

How the hell do football players end up going bankrupt? If I had 1 years worth of their salary, I'd never have to work another day in my life.
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Old 01-15-2011, 03:35 AM   #3
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

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How the hell do football players end up going bankrupt? If I had 1 years worth of their salary, I'd never have to work another day in my life.
Trying to do too much.

It doesn't work that way. The more money you make, the nicer of a house you want etc.

A million isn't endless these day. You buy a $750K house then spend another 25K inside... You have family members hounding you...especially parents. These days those who get to feel rich are those with rich parents (who need nothing) and no student loans.
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Old 01-15-2011, 03:50 AM   #4
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

No that's only what stupid people say. I'd buy a modest house, and make sure I paid it in full and bank the property taxes for life. Then I'd put myself on a budget to make sure that I never had to work again (unless it was something I enjoyed). Some people dream about taking trips and having boats - my dream is not working. LOL I'd have some fun if I had some extra but ensuring permanent retirement would be first. ;)
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Old 01-15-2011, 04:33 AM   #5
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

Budgeting and getting help from professionals is worth the money as long as you do your homework properly. Hopefully, he'll bounce back from this because he's a standup guy.
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Old 01-15-2011, 05:50 AM   #6
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

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Budgeting and getting help from professionals is worth the money as long as you do your homework properly. Hopefully, he'll bounce back from this because he's a standup guy.
Agreed. Charlie will come back from this.
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:48 AM   #7
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

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Trying to do too much.

It doesn't work that way. The more money you make, the nicer of a house you want etc.

A million isn't endless these day. You buy a $750K house then spend another 25K inside... You have family members hounding you...especially parents. These days those who get to feel rich are those with rich parents (who need nothing) and no student loans.
exactly. A nice house, a couple cars, helping out some friends and family, trying to run a business you buy....Batch type money goes pretty quickly. Its harder for these kind of guys...although you can definitely make an argument that they don't budget their monies well.
It's a much better cushion when you can get Harrison/Ben type of money.
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Old 01-15-2011, 08:08 AM   #8
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

Batch made a pile of cash a few years back...todays money should be icing on the cake.
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Old 01-15-2011, 10:49 AM   #9
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

Some guys start out trying to have a plan to give back and they think with their heart not with their brain or pocketbook.
Also, some in fact most with exception of Elway and some others who had a business sense have made 100's of millions of dollars. These guys see these rare breeds and want to "by like "mike".

Than the gradually over extend and wham the market falls out and they are stuck holding the bag.
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Old 01-15-2011, 10:52 AM   #10
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Default Re: Bankruptcy doesn't sideline QB Batch

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Originally Posted by CaliStillersFan View Post
How the hell do football players end up going bankrupt? If I had 1 years worth of their salary, I'd never have to work another day in my life.
Its easy to get caught up in a finacial dept if your rich...At least Charlie was doin it in a good way.
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