Thursday, February 23, 2012

Bonuses given after raises at Solyndra; authorized by bankruptcy court

Several of the nearly two dozen employees at bankrupt solar panel maker Solyndra LLC who were approved for bonuses Wednesday had months earlier received pay raises as high as 70 percent, a fact the company never disclosed in its request for bonus cash.

Solyndra attorney Bruce Grohsgal defended not including that information in the bonus request, saying the raises were given as part of the company’s ordinary course of business since the employees had taken on more responsibilities.

“There was no thought we were hiding something,” he said.

He also said the employee who received a 70 percent raise was earning less than $70,000 in base salary but had taken on many new responsibilities.

Solyndra sought the bonuses weeks ago, raising the ire of Republican members of Congress who called on the Obama administration to oppose the extra payments. The Justice Department filed no opposition to the request.

While disturbed at what she called a lack of disclosure, Judge Walrath approved the bonuses after learning that a creditors committee did not object after negotiating a lower payout than the nearly half-million dollars first sought.

Read the full article at the Washington Times

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