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President Obama’s Green Thumb Helps Grow Insider Trading, Not the Economy

President Obama’s Department of Energy (DOE) likes to gamble with taxpayer money on politically favored green energy companies the private sector is too wise to touch.  The Washington Free Beacon has identified yet another instance of the DOE wasting taxpayer money on a failed green energy company, which may now have to declare bankruptcy:

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has suspended stimulus payments to a major green energy company after the company said it is having trouble finding financing and may have to declare bankruptcy.

ECOtality admitted that possibility in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) last week. Lackluster sales caused revenues to fall significantly short of its expenses, the company said.

ECOtality has received more than $100 million in federal funds, the bulk of which came in a $99.8 million stimulus award for the construction of its electric vehicle charging stations.

The company continued receiving federal funds even as it came under federal investigation for insider trading. Last week’s SEC filing revealed that it has also been under investigation by the Department of Labor for alleged violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Davis-Bacon Act.

All of this company’s questionable practices aside, though, its mere existence is an affront to the free-market and hence to taxpayers everywhere, whose money is being thrown away on politically favored companies.  Mr. Obama’s green energy push has done nothing to help the economy, though some of his cronies may be benefitting.

The Washington Free Beacon continues:

DOE’s inspector general recently faulted poor demand for its products for numerous problems with its federal award under DOE’s EV Project.

Its SEC filing attributes revenue shortfalls to “the company’s failure to attain sales volumes of its commercial Electric Vehicle Service Equipment (‘EVSE’) sufficient to support the company’s operations in the second half of 2013.”

Other SEC filings have made clear that the company remains highly dependent on continued federal funding. Recognizing that fact, it unsuccessfully attempted to make its charging stations independently viable.

The Heritage Foundation explains:

The only way to ensure these bad bets don’t continue to occur is by getting the government completely out of the way and allowing the free-market to be the driver of energy investment.

 

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