Murkowski Renews Request for Oversight Hearing on DOE Loan Guarantee Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today renewed her request to Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., that the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hold an oversight hearing on the Department of Energy’s loan programs. This renewed request comes as the Obama administration released an audit of the Loan Program Office (LPO) at DOE.

“It’s clear that implementation of the DOE’s loan programs has flaws that need to be addressed,” Murkowski said. “As the Senate committee of jurisdiction, it’s our responsibility to understand these problems and correct them to ensure that the programs are working as intended and are not wasting taxpayer dollars. Simply ignoring the problems does the programs a disservice and leaves them vulnerable to elimination.”

Murkowski is asking that Energy Secretary Steven Chu testify before the Energy Committee on the loan programs. Murkowski has been asking for an oversight hearing to review DOE’s loan programs since the solar company Solyndra, which received a $535 million loan guarantee, filed for bankruptcy last August.

“Between the House and the Senate, we are the only committee that has not held a hearing to look into DOE’s loan programs,” Murkowski said. “I’m a strong proponent of the program, but it’s clear that there are some issues that need to be addressed for me to defend it.”

The letter from Ranking Member Murkowski to Chairman Bingaman is attached.