Wash. Loan Program Fails To Attract Interest

A loan program aimed at jumpstarting Washington manufacturing companies has been deemed a failure by the state legislature.
by | September 26, 2011

A Washington program that would have lent money to the state’s manufacturing companies to overhaul their business models has totally failed, and the lawmakers who backed it have asked for the program to be allowed to expire. Not one company applied for a loan, the News Tribune reports.

A few companies showed interest, but were turned off by the 5 percent interest rate, which wasn’t competitive with private banks, and the required financial disclosures, according to the newspaper. The state’s auditors have recommended the program end, as the state’s department of commerce spent a little more than $44,000 setting up and maintaining the program.

Sen. Jim Kastama, who spearheaded the initial legislation, said there must be other ways to encourage economic growth.

“I was hoping to do that in this piece of legislation. We clearly missed the mark,” Kastama told the News Tribune. “But that doesn’t mean what we were trying to do was not valuable to companies in Washington state.”

The program expires on June 30, 2012.


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