Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
March 16, 2012
This week, Senators on the Energy and Natural Resources Committee criticized the Energy Department on their handling of the $25 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing initiative.
Created in 2007, the Energy Department has only given out less than half of the funds during the four years of existence. Only four companies have gotten their loans; Ford, Nissan, Fisker Automotive, and Tesla.
The Energy Department hasn’t given out any loans within two years and that has caused many companies to drop out.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, said many companies have expressed deep frustration about not getting a loan answer. She went onto say the program was "virtually dormant.”
Energy Secretary Steven Chu defended the handling of the program,
"We would like to see private equity invested in these companies," Chu said, adding the government wants to see evidence of private support.
Other senators on the committee wonder why the program even exist.
When leaving the hearing, Chu told reporters that the department was working with "many qualified applicants" to complete new auto and other green energy loans. When asked if any would be approved before the election, Chu said,
"There's no reason not to. The conditions of the program haven't changed."
Source: The Detroit News