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Energy Department recovers $21 million from Fisker to pay back loans

Fisker still owes feds $192 million.

By AutoWeek Apr 23, 2013 7:14AM

The U.S. Department of Energy says it recovered $21 million in cash from struggling Fisker Automotive that will go toward repaying nearly $200 million in loans extended under a U.S. program to spur advanced vehicle development.

The Energy Department recouped the cash on April 11, DOE spokeswoman Aoife McCarthy said in a statement Monday.

"Given the obvious difficulties the company is facing, we are taking strong and appropriate action on behalf of taxpayers," the agency said in a statement.

A spokeswoman from Sitrick and Co., Fisker's outside public relations agency, declined to comment.

McCarthy said the agency recovered cash from Fisker's approximately $21 million reserve account -- funds that came from the company's sales and investors, not the department's loan.

Fisker, a maker of luxury plug-in cars, owes the U.S. government about $192 million of the $529 million credit line it received from the agency in 2009.

The company's first repayment of $20.2 million on the Energy Department loan was due Monday.

It wasn't clear if the funds recovered on April 11 satisfied today's payment.

The department suspended disbursements on the $529 million loan in June 2011 after Fisker fell short of U.S. sales and production milestones established as a condition of the loan.

Fisker, based in Anaheim, Calif., stopped manufacturing cars last summer and has about 50 employees after it laid off three quarters of its workers on April 5 to preserve cash.

It has retained Kirkland & Ellis LLP, a law firm with one of the largest U.S. bankruptcy practices.

A U.S. House panel is scheduled to hold a hearing Wednesday on Fisker and its government financing.

Witnesses invited to attend the hearing include Fisker co-founder and namesake Henrik Fisker, who resigned last month; CEO Tony Posawatz and Chief Operating Officer Bernhard Koehler, who helped start the company.

-- Automotive News (Ryan Beene, David Phillips, Reuters and Bloomberg contributed to this report)

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Apr 23, 2013 2:27PM

Soo... Politicians hold everyone accountable for everything, yet hold themselves accountable for nothing...?

Got it...

Apr 23, 2013 7:54AM
Sad that our government sees fit to punish lending companies for making bad decisions and yet our government is even worse at it than they are!

" The fact that we are here today to debate America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure.It's a sign that the U.S. government cannot pay it's own bills. It's a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government's reckless fiscal policies. Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally.  Leadership means that, "the buck stops here". Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership, Americans deserve better."
  Senator Barack H. Obama, March 2006 

What a hypocrite!!

Apr 25, 2013 9:35AM
Ladies and gentleman we are only talking $500 milion here.  If you want to get mad about something get mad about Apple giving away roughly $100 Billion so they dont have to pay $35 Billion in taxes they owe for profits.  That $35 Billion would go a lot further than the $500 million loan to Fisker.
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