Georgians Demand Answers After Brian Kemp’s Failed Company Gets Its “Undisclosed” Bailout

December 12, 2019

Recent Report Raises Even More Questions About Governor’s Sweet Heart Loans, Business Dealings

ATLANTA – Georgians today are left with more unanswered questions about Governor Brian Kemp’s massive outstanding debt from multiple shady business deals. The AJC reported that Hart AgStrong, a struggling agriculture company that Kemp is a part-owner of and guaranteed millions of dollars in loans to, was bailed out for an “undisclosed price.” Two of Kemp’s loans for the company totaling $600,000 were due last year, with others set to mature this year. 

“Brian Kemp has proven once again that he plays by his own set of rules.” said Maggie Chambers, spokeswoman for the Democratic Party of Georgia. “In 2018, it was $800,000 in insider loans to a bank he helped start, and now a failed company he backed and still appears to owe money was bailed out in a secret, ‘undisclosed’ deal. Unlike Brian Kemp, everyday Georgians don’t get sweetheart loans or a convenient bailout when they fall on hard times. Georgians and those stiffed by Kemp and Hart AgStrong in the first place deserve answers.”

Hart AgStrong has been a legal embarrassment for Kemp and was devastating for the farmers involved. In 2018, the AJC reported that Hart AgStrong owed millions in missed payments to farmers who trusted their livelihood with the company. And most recently a lawsuit alleged that Kemp failed to repay a $500,000 loan he negotiated and personally guaranteed for Hart Agstrong. Financier of Kemp’s loan and “die-hard Republican” Rick Phillips said, “I expected him to keep his word, and he didn’t. That speaks volumes about Brian.”

Financial records show that Kemp at one point guaranteed $10 million in loans to the company – about twice his reported net worth.

Yet after “technical problems and flawed financial decisions” from Hart AgStrong left local residents and farmers feeling “betrayed,” Kemp failed to take responsibility for the company, answering “I don’t know,” “I don’t remember” or “I don’t recall” at least 91 times when questioned about the company’s finances in a deposition related to the lawsuit.

Read more on Kemp’s shady finances here:

AJC: Ag giant acquires Kemp-backed company at center of legal dispute

Fox 5 Atlanta: Brian Kemp owes more than $800,000 in insider loans to bank he helped start

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