A private corporation created with a 25-million dollar interest-free loan has come under fire from a Democrat state lawmaker who says it’s making too many risky investments. Representative Mark Kuhn, a farmer from Charles City, today will deliver documents to the Iowa Attorney General and the Iowa State Auditor calling for an investigation of the Iowa Agricultural Finance Corporation. He says he feels they haven’t kept up with the intent of the law.Kuhn cites the corporation’s six-million dollar investment in Prodi-Gene Incorporated, a Texas-based biotech firm that has been fined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for mishandling its pharmaceutical corn crops last year. He wants and investigation, as he says we need producer owned, value-added opportunities, and that’s where Prodi-Gene has failed.It’s not the first time that Iowa Ag Finance has come under fire. Lawmakers in late 1999 and early 2000 criticized the corporation for failing to fulfill its mission because it had not yet lent any money to farmers.
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