published Friday, April 25th, 2014

State Democratic chief calls for probe into Gov. Bill Haslam's withdrawal of VW incentives

Bill Haslam
Bill Haslam
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Roy Herron today called for an investigation into Gov. Bill Haslam administration’s withdrawal of a $300 million financial incentives offer to Volkswagen in light of new documents that he said contradict previous administration statements.

Herron said new emails from Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development officials to Volkswagen leaders leaked to WTVF in Nashville show financial incentives were rescinded unilaterally by the state, contrary to previous administration claims that the offer was pulled because VW failed to meet a deadline.

“These emails reveal that there was no deadline, and the administration’s previous statements were at best misleading and perhaps outright falsehoods,” Herron said in a statement.

“It is now clear the administration held over 1,000 Tennessee jobs hostage for political reasons. The Haslam administration is stonewalling and refusing to answer reporters’ questions, but taxpayers and workers deserve the truth,” he said.

Herron called on Lieutenant Gov. Ron Ramsey and House Speaker Beth Harwell to immediately have legislative committees conduct a full investigation.

See more in Saturday’s Times Free Press.

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