Today I want to point out that in my research for my previous blog post, I discovered that Mitt Romney has a Green Energy stimulus failure of his own: Konarka.
While Governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney gave a state loan of $1.5 million to Konarka which recently filed for bankruptcy and fired all of its workers.
According to the Boston Globe,
In January 2003, shortly after taking office in Massachusetts, Romney held another press conference -- at Konarka, where he announced a plan to loan $24 million from the state’s renewable energy trust fund to startups with the potential to create jobs.
The Bush Administration, too, granted this company $3.6 million in tax payer money and the Obama Administration later gave tax credits to the company.
Under the Bush administration, Konarka received a $1.6 million US Army contract in 2005 and a $3.6 million award from the Department of Energy in 2007. Under the Obama administration, Konarka was one of 183 clean energy companies nationwide that got a total of $2.3 billion in tax credits as part of the 2009 stimulus.
Aye yei yei, my head hurts (probably related to my flu, but this news isn't helping).
Where did the rest of that $24 million in planned loans go? Were any of those companies successful? Were those loans paid back?
According to this Politico article, it appears that Konarka paid back the $1.5 million loan. It also appears that the decision to loan that money to Konarka was made in December of 2002, before Romney became Governor.
The article also suggests that Deval Patrick's Administration loaned another $5 million to Konarka. It's not mentioned in the article when they were given this loan or if this loan was ever paid back.