Rick Perry's Texas agricultural loan program questioned
Texas Governor and presidential contender Rick Perry is coming under scrutiny for his handling of an agricultural development loan program he ran as the state's ag commissioner in the 1990's. According to the Austin American-Statesman,
Over his eight years as Texas' farmer-in-chief, Perry oversaw a loan guarantee program with so many defaults that the state had to stop guaranteeing bank loans to startups in agribusiness and eventually bailed out the program with taxpayer money. The state auditor panned Perry's claims of creating jobs and criticized Perry and his fellow board members at the Texas Agricultural Finance Authority for not following their own lending guidelines....
By 2002, Perry's successor, Agriculture Commissioner Susan Combs, a Republican, stopped making loans as the percentage of bad loans neared 30 percent.
By 2009, her successor, Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples, also a Republican, asked the Legislature to pay off the loan guarantees with a $14.7 million appropriation. The finance authority could no longer afford the $541,000 to cover the annual interest on the bad debts, almost all of which dated back to Perry's tenure.
"Windmill, Hwy 159, Fayette County, Texas" by accent on eclectic