LOAN GUARANTEES GET STOPPED AND GO ON
Energy Department OKs new loan guarantees for green projects; As the Solyndra investigation unfolds, two executives of the bankrupt company invoke their right against self-incrimination before a congressional panel.
Ken Bensinger and Alexa Vaugh,September 24, 2011 (LA Times)
"The Department of Energy granted final approval to three new loan guarantees for green energy projects, even as it faced continued scrutiny over $528 million in government loan assurances to solar panel maker Solyndra, which went bankrupt.
"The new guarantees were announced…after executives of Solyndra invoked their 5th Amendment privilege against self-incrimination before a congressional subcommittee investigating the loan guarantee process."
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"Meanwhile, two other solar companies said they would probably not get funding under the same program, despite earlier promises from the government… SolarCity…was informed…the Department of Energy would not be able to complete its review process by a Sept. 30 deadline…[and] First Solar…[will not be able to] complete its application for a $1.93-billion loan guarantee for a solar farm…
"The loan guarantee program was authorized by Congress in 2009. Unlike a loan, a guarantee is a promise to repay a third party for financing a project should the borrower fail to meet its obligations…Nine projects are still awaiting a green light from the DOE, including two other First Solar efforts. To date, the agency has completed 21 loan guarantees, worth up to $10.1 billion…"