NEW 11 Alive Report: Kemp Administration Chose Unqualified Gift Card Company over Known Bidders for Billion-Dollar Taxpayer Contract For Political Gain

May 10, 2024

Company had no experience and the program was widely panned for failing to deliver on Kemp’s promises

Connecticut-based company Rellevate was awarded the taxpayer-funded contract after they were the only company that promised they could put Kemp’s name on the cards and distribute them before voters received ballots


11 Alive just revealed shocking new findings in Governor Kemp’s ongoing cash card scandal showing the Governor’s office hand-picked a vendor who had no experience to manage the bungled $1.2 billion cash giveaway program based on that company’s ability to help his re-election campaign.


According to 11 Alive’s Doug Richards, Kemp’s Office of Planning and Budget imposed several requirements on the companies he hand-picked to submit proposals, including:

  • Ensuring the program’s launch by September 15, 2022
  • Giving the State the ability to design cards

“Governor Kemp decided when and how to distribute $1.2 billion taxpayer dollars based on what would be best for his re-election campaign and the only way to get it done before voting began was to handpick the company with the least experience,” said DPG Executive Director Tolulope Kevin Olasanoye. “It’s clear this ongoing scandal demands the full, thorough, and immediate investigation that his ally Attorney General Chris Carr refuses to conduct.”

Connecticut-based Rellevate — a gift card company with clients such as Crocs, Dunkin Donuts, and Subway — was the only bidder who could meet Kemp’s two requirements. They were awarded the contract over two other vendors, Conduent and Stralto, despite those vendors having extensive experience processing government benefit payments as well as robust security and fraud prevention protocols. 

From the moment the program launched, recipients complained of fraud. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “some people said the accounts where the money was stored were emptied before they could access them, and others had trouble spending the money at all.” 

A recent audit released by the state of Georgia’s Department of Audits, revealed that Brian Kemp’s administration “sidestepped the law” when it hand-picked vendors and rushed to approve the billion-dollar contract even though the report said state law required the state to publish a request for proposals on its website. State leaders have called for an investigation into the Kemp Administration’s conduct.


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