Graves Releases Statement On Report Taxpayers Owed Billions In Bailout Money

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Representative Tom Graves (R-Ga.-09) issued the a statement Thursday, in response to a report by a government watchdog group that found U.S. taxpayers are still owed $132.9 billion from companies that received money from the financial bailout.

The Troubled Asset Relief Program is a $700 billion project launched in September 2008 to bailout private financial companies. The report also found that some of the bailout money may never be repaid to taxpayers.

Representative Graves supported H.R. 830, the FHA Refinance Program Termination Act, and H.R. 839, the HAMP Termination Act. H.R. 830 would rescind any unused TARP funds directed to the Federal Housing Administration Refinance Program to pay down the overwhelming federal debt.

FHA Refinance Program dollars are not given to homeowners, but to lenders and banks, and only helped 44 people over two years. H.R. 839 would rescind any unused TARP funds for the Home Affordable Modification Program. President Obama directed $30 billion to HAMP through TARP with the promise of HAMP helping four million homeowners. However, HAMP has only helped about 13 percent of the homeowners President Obama estimated, and the re-default rate among those helped is alarmingly high.

Representative Graves said, “The federal government should never use taxpayers’ money to decide which companies should survive or fail. While I was not a member of the House when Congress passed the bailout, I most certainly would have voted against it. The federal government should never be allowed to pick winners and losers in the marketplace. This report’s determination that taxpayers are still on the hook for more than $130 billion is additional evidence that the government should stay out of the private sector, and let the free market work efficiently. I strongly oppose bailouts, buyouts, cash for clunkers – or any other program where the federal government inserts itself into free enterprise.

“Government has a poor record of making wise decisions with taxpayer dollars. This report is further evidence of that. This is why I supported H.R. 830, the FHA Refinance Program Termination Act, and H.R. 839, the HAMP Termination Act. Unfortunately, these common sense bills to end these two failed projects and save taxpayer dollars have been stonewalled by the Senate.”

Community Organizations Celebrating Milestone Anniversaries

Three organizations committed to the betterment of Cleveland and Bradley County are celebrating milestone anniversaries this year. The Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce is turning 90, and both Cleveland Associated Industries and Junior Achievement of the Ocoee Region will celebrate golden anniversaries. Combined, these organizations represent 190 years of service. “Our ... (click for more)

TSBDC To Recognize Local Rising Stars And Small Business Person Of The Year During CEO Speaker Series On Oct. 14

Precluding the CEO Speaker Series on Oct. 14, Sharyn Moreland, managing director, TN Small Business Development Center will recognize local Rising Stars and the TSBDC Small Business Person of the Year for 2015. The Rising Star award is given annually by the TSBDC to the companies that best exemplify not only business success, but also an outstanding working relationship with ... (click for more)

Legislative Hearing On Volkswagen Emissions Scandal To Be Held In Chattanooga Oct. 29; Haslam To Visit VW Plant Wednesday

The Senate Finance, Ways and Means Committee’s Appropriation Subcommittee will be conducting a hearing in Chattanooga to review the financial impact on the state from Volkswagen’s violation of U.S. emissions standards. The meeting will be held at the Hamilton County Department of Education, 3074 Hickory Valley Road, on Thursday, Oct. 29, from 1:30-3:30 p.m.  Members ... (click for more)

Bradley County Commission Decides Not To Provide Animal Pickup Service

Bradley County Commissioners on Monday finally put animal control to rest. It was not easy and it was not without confusion, but in the end, the county will not provide animal pickup service. Confusion began when commissioners were asked to approve the agenda, which included two options for animal control pick up. Item “D” provided for the SPCA of Bradley County to pick ... (click for more)

VW PILOT Crash Landing

The Volkswagen emission scandal proves the point citizen activist, Ms. Helen Burns Sharp, has repeatedly brought to the attention of local government officials. She urged them to "beef up" the PILOT contracts before approving PILOT tax abatements. Any logical person would agree, because it is the only way to recoup a tax loss when unthinkable situations arise. Volkswagen's willful ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: VW’s Primer In Disaster

Volkswagen America has gotten into a real bad “tight,” causing their red-faced leaders to huddle with spin doctors, crisis consultants and countless priests in confessional booths. Conversely, I suspect I have found a solution that would get them out of the mud and hasten their return as one of the top automotive providers in the world. You see, on Aug. 14, 1979, the playbook on ... (click for more)