Where stimulus money worked and didn't work - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Where stimulus money worked (Love INC) and didn't work (Fuddrucker's)


A former Nacogdoches city councilman is granted stimulus funding for a hamburger shop that's now shut down. Students and professionals receive a college education, while the unemployed receive rental assistance.

Those are just some ways stimulus funding was used in east Texas.

This summer the over $429 billion in recovery funding for the most part is expiring. Nacogdoches received more than $25.7 million. Angelina County obtained $12,8 million. It was given to nine federal agencies, including education, transportation and health and human services.

"Certainly, the county has benefited from the stimulus money with projects that were very worthy projects," Nacogdoches County Judge Joe English said.

The Small Business Administration received a large share.

"If the bank is not entirely comfortable making a loan then the SBA will come in and give us a guarantee," said bank president Francis Spruiell.

A bank wanted that guarantee with former Nacogdoches City Councilman Don Partin for a Fuddrucker's restaurant. More than $616,000 in SBA stimulus funding started the business, only for the owner to abruptly close less than a week ago. Bankers say the successes far outweigh the failures.

"I will tell you, I'm working on three SBA loans right now," Spruiell said. "And without that SBA guarantee,I wouldn't be able to make these loans. These people would not be going into business."

"Unfortunately, you're always going to have a bad apple or you're going to have something that's probably not a good success story, but you're also going to have many success stories," English said.

About a million dollars was used at Love In The Name Of Christ for a homeless prevention program. Now there's no local money to carry it on. Four people may lose their jobs.

Recipients say the stimulus funding was nice while it lasted. As it goes away, many federal funding cuts arrive.

Millions in stimulus money went toward HUD housing in East Texas. Residents received rental assistance, but also complained of badly needed repairs in complexes.

Copyright 2011 KTRE. All rights reserved.

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