Green stimulus profiteer comes under IRS scrutiny


Carney: Green stimulus profiteer comes under IRS scrutiny
Timothy P. Carney

If he can stop cackling for long enough, Biden, the self-proclaimed “stimulus sheriff” should sit down with the IRS officials and the federal inspector general who are investigating a solar company owned by leading Obama donor and subsidy recipient Elon Musk.

Musk, as he cashes in on his solar investment by taking his company SolarCity public this month, had to make an awkward admission in his financial filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Internal Revenue Service is auditing SolarCity, the SEC filings reveal, and at the same time the Treasury Department’s inspector general is investigating the company. The question at hand: Did President Obama’s Treasury Department inappropriately give stimulus money to Musk’s company.

Treasury found that SolarCity repeatedly overstated the value of its investments, the SEC filings indicate. In those cases, Treasury awarded smaller grants than SolarCity had tried to claim. Now the department’s IG and the IRS are doing a broader audit of the projects for which SolarCity and other large solar companies got stimulus cash. Investigators want to know if the companies regularly overstated the value of their investments and thus got overly generous taxpayer grants.

Green Hype Fail! Remember this the next time you hear one of those rooftop solar panel ads promising “free” panels and installation while paying lower electricity rates. You paid for all that, through the Crony-Stimulus and your electricity company being forced to buy a legally specified percentage of their power from wind and solar companies at well above market rates. This looks at one such solar Crony-Stimulus: it’s not the first to be exposed; it won’t be the last to be exposed.