The now-bankrupt Summit Texas Clean Energy company received MILLIONS from the Obama administration in 2010 after a report from the Energy Department’s inspector general became public. $1.7 million in fact.
This raises questions, as well as concerns, about abusing taxpayer funds.
The inspector general says that the Energy Department, under Obama, gave a potentially unallowable” $1.2 million in lobbying as well as $1.3 million in “questionable or prohibited” travel-related expenses.
The report also revealed Obama’s Energy Department gave millions of additional dollars to the coal company when they requested it despite never requesting sufficient documentation.
“(The Office of) Fossil Energy had not always exercised sound project and financial management practices in its oversight of the project,” the inspector general said.
As reported by The Washington Examiner:
The travel-related expenses include more than $650,000 incurred by a consultant used by Summit Texas Clean Energy for items such as a spa service, alcohol, first-class travel, limousine services, receipts in foreign currency, and business meals.
Companies partnering with the government cannot charge for lobbying fees under federal law.
The Texas Clean Energy Project promised to capture 2 million tons of carbon dioxide a year from a coal plant, or 90 percent of its annual emissions, and bury them underground.
Under the terms of the project, the Energy Department was supposed to obtain from Summit Texas Clean Energy invoices prior to reimbursing the company and approving the expenditures.
he Energy Department in June 2016 suspended funding for the project, which was plagued by delays and was unable to attract sufficient private financing.
An inspector general report that year found the Energy Department took actions “that increased its financial risk without assurances that the project would succeed.”
Summit Texas Clean Energy filed for bankruptcy in October 2017.
The new inspector general report comes after Congress last week passed a government spending bill that would extend and expand a tax credit supporting carbon capture and storage projects.
(H/T The Washington Examiner)