City audit reveals problems with ART-related business loan program

City audit reveals problems with ART-related business loan program


THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS TO HELP SMALL BUSINESSES ON CENTRAL DURING THE MASSIVE A-R-T CONSTRUCTION PROJECT. BUT A NEW CITY AUDIT HIGHLIGHTS PROBLEMS.. AND A LOT OF QUESTIONS ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT MONEY. NEWS 13 )S CHRIS MCKEE REVIEWED THAT REPORT.. HE )S LIVE AT CITY HALL. DEAN AND JESS… NEARLY A QUARTER-MILLION DOLLARS ENDED UP BEING LOANED OUT TO HELP A HANDFUL OF BUSINESSES ON THE CENTRAL CORRIDOR… BUT THE AUDIT SUGGESTS.. SOME OF THE LOANS SHOULDN )T HAVE EVEN BEEN DOLLED OUT. ( (sound of traffic ( ( Issac Benton/Albuquerque City Councilor 06:23 “It )s not acceptable” IT )S LONGTIME ALBUQUERQUE CITY COUNCILOR ISAAC BENTON )S TAKE… ON HOW THE CITY HANDLED WHAT WAS PITCHED AS A FINANCIAL LIFE-LINE .. FOR BUSINESSES ON THE ART CORRIDOR. Isaac Benton/Albuquerque City Councilor 06:19 “Clearly it wasn )t being monitored carefully” 06:21 00:06 ( (sound of bulldozer backing up, beeping ( ( WHEN A-R-T CONSTRUCTION HIT FULL BORE… Mayor Richard Berry 00:06 “We )ve got great community members and other businesses” 00:08 MAYOR BERRY )S ADMINISTRATION OFFERED LOANS. Mayor Richard Berry 00:09 “This is what Albuquerque )s all about” 00:10 BUSINESSES THAT WERE STRUGGLING… WERE OFFERED A CHANCE AT THE CITY )S SO-CALLED “CENTRAL LOAN FUND” 01:08 ( (sound of truck dumping ( ( THE FUND… OFFERING LOW- INTEREST LOANS OF UP TO 15-THOUSAND DOLLARS PER BUSINESS.. MONEY THEY COULD USE TO PAY RENT.. PAYROLL AND OTHER COSTS. Councilor Isaac Benton 01:15 “I did agree with the idea, of course, it made sense to have something to help out businesses” 01:19 BUT ACCORDING TO A NEWLY RELEASED CITY AUDIT SOME OF THE LOANS.. MAY HAVE BROKEN THE PROGRAM )S RULES. 08:14 ( (sound of traffic ( ( ROUTE 66 DINER ON CENTRAL NEAR I-25 GOT A 15-THOUSAND DOLLAR LOAN.. BUT AUDITORS SAY THEY SHOULDN )T HAVE… BECAUSE THEY MAKE MORE THAN TWO-MILLION A YEAR IN REVENUES. 02:35 ( (sound of music ( ( A NOW DEFUNCT OLD TOWN GALLERY GOT A 5-THOUSAND DOLLAR LOAN.. BUT AUDITORS SAY THEY WEREN )T ON CENTRAL AND DIDN )T QUALIFY FOR A LOAN. 01:54 ( (sound of traffic ( ( AUDITORS ALSO SAY THE X-PAC GYM GOT A 15-HUNDRED DOLLAR LOAN.. BUT NEVER ENDED UP OPENING THEIR BUSINESS. THE AUDIT SAYS THE LOAN FUND )S “ADMINISTRATION AND OVERSIGHT NEEDED IMPROVEMENT.” Isaac Benton 06:23 “It )s not acceptable, on the other hand… at this point, it )s probably water under the bridge” 06:26 THE LOAN PROGRAM WAS RUN BY A NON- PROFIT CALLED THE “SMALL BUSINESS RESOURCE COLLABORATIVE” .. WHICH DOESN )T EXIST ANYMORE. 26 BUSINESSES IN ALL GOT 228- THOUSAND DOLLARS WORTH OF LOANS. WE )VE POSTED THE FULL LIST ON KRQE DOT COM. DEAN? OKAY CHRIS. ??AS FOR WHO PAID FOR ALL THOSE LOANS?? LOCAL BUSINESSES ONLY ENDED UP PAYING BACK ABOUT THREE-THOUSAND DOLLARS TOTAL. NEW VIDEO SHOWS AN

2 Comments

  • latinovic505 says:

    Good fuck the city for being stupid and starting the art Project in the first place! Dont pay the city back just file bankruptcy. If they have enough money to waste on all those buses and construction for art then those loans shouldn't mean anything to them lol!

  • Ave Ten says:

    God dam art project

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