Fisker DOE Loan Questioned by GOP Senators

Fisker DOE Loan Questioned by GOP Senators

Government loans to Fisker are under fire by a pair or Republican senators who disagree with tax dollars going to a company that is owned, in part, by a foreign country.

Chuck Grassley and John Thune, senators from Iowa and South Dakota respectively wrote a letter to Energy Secretary Steven Chu regarding the Department of Energy’s subsidy. “Why should the American taxpayer have to accept the credit risk of a company owned by a foreign government,” they said in the letter.

In total, the DOE has agreed to loan Fisker $529 million, though a healthy chunk of that has yet to be paid out. Grassley and Thune’s complaints stem specifically from the Qatar Investment Authority owning a stake in the company.

Fisker insists that it is focused on creating American jobs and on keeping its business healthy. Given how unreliable the DOE can be with doling checks in a timely and predictable manner, isn’t it silly to fault a business for keeping itself afloat? Of the initial figure, Fisker has only seen $193 million.

Earlier this year the company reported selling 1000 units worldwide and total revenue equalling $100 million, something it might not have achieved without worldwide investment. More than anything, that would raise the question of whether or not the DOE should be giving tax money out to businesses that might go belly up in general, not just Fisker.

  • William

    I think it’s wrong that Fisker, or any startup brand got any money. The auto industry bailout was one thing – it SAVED jobs. Pissing millions and millions down a chute like this is a waste. If you added up the number of jobs created, and used that number to divide the total DOE contributions, I think you would find that we’ve allowed something pretty damn stupid to go on…

  • Danny Tse

    Would it be better if we give billions of $$$ as tax breaks to the oil industry or multi-national corporations?  Heck, why not just let the GOP pick out a Third World country and then spend the money on the invasion?