The Office of Thrift Supervision may temporarily relax some rules for thrifts that help businesses and residents rebuild after Hurricane Fran.

In a bulletin sent Monday to thrift chief executive officers in the Carolinas, Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia, the OTS said it "will consider temporarily waiving" the 35% cap on thrift lending to businesses and consumers.

For up to 18 months, the OTS also may relax its standards for the amount of core capital that thrifts must hold as a percentage of total assets, according to the bulletin signed by Richard M. Riccobono, acting OTS regional director for the Southeast.

Capital requirements could be eased for those thrifts that get a surge in deposits from insurance and government payments for storm damage, Mr. Riccobono said.

The agency also may extend some reporting and regulatory deadlines for thrifts with significant operations in disaster areas, the OTS said.

The OTS urged thrift lenders to consider temporarily waiving their late- payment charges to customers, and to work with borrowers to restructure or increase their loans to pay for storm repairs.

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