Tuesday’s local “newspapers” both featured a front-page Associated Press article about the money that Governor Jim Justice’s companies received from the federal government's coronavirus aid package:
Billionaire West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s family businesses received at least $11.1 million from a federal rescue package meant to keep small businesses afloat during the coronavirus pandemic, according to data released by the Treasury Department on Monday.
The money came from the Payment Protection Program. As the Small Business Administration describes it:
The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.
SBA will forgive loans if all employee retention criteria are met, and the funds are used for eligible expenses.
Yesterday, for those interested in who received the loans, ProPublica released a searchable database that includes all companies that received federal loans over $150,000. What makes the database interesting is that it easily allows the reader to search by organization, lender, zip code, or type of business.
Curious, I searched the database for the Wheeling zip code (26003) and 127 loans were listed. Four Wheeling businesses received loans from two to five million dollars and two received one to two million-dollar loans. In the next group of $350,000 to $1 million were two businesses. One of those was McKinley & Associates which was founded by our local congressman, David McKinley.
Let me see if I understand this. Governor Justice’s businesses received PPP money and it became front-page news in Wheeling’s papers. On the other hand, our local congressman David McKinley, who actually voted for the aid package that benefited his business, was also a recipient. There is no mention of this in yesterday’s or today’s paper. Of course not, David McKinley is an Ogden favorite.
Then there is this:
Perhaps, someday, the congressman will share his story with us.
Update -- Trump donors' companies got $273 million
Missed this AP report from last night and for some it reason did not make it into today's papers:
As much as $273 million in federal coronavirus aid was awarded to more than 100 companies that are owned or operated by major donors to President Donald Trump’s election efforts, according to an Associated Press analysis of federal data. . . .
All told, the Trump supporters who run these companies have contributed at least $11.1 million since May 2015 to Trump’s campaign committees, the Republican National Committee and America First Action, a super PAC that has been endorsed by Trump, the AP review found. Each donor gave at least $20,000.