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"I wanna stop you and have you go through it line by line that's how egregious this is," said State Senator Mike Bell.
The investigation by the State Comptroller details several issues with the program that began in 2006.
Auditor Vincent Finamore says the former administrators of the program, including former Revenue Commissioner Reagan Farr, didn't make sure the companies they were giving money to were actually based in Tennessee.
"Resulting in possibly the inappropriate refund of $7,536,498 in tax revenue," said Finamore.
Finamore says that's just the beginning too.
His office reviewed the program's work from 2006 to 2011 and found it gave money to 3 film projects with ties to the program's former Executive Director's spouse.
That's along with thousands of problems with expenses productions listed to qualify for incentive money.
Finamore detailed one memorable one.
"The allowance of the full retail price of a pick up truck for a film that had a 31 day production time," said Finamore.
The State Comptroller says it all adds up to wasted taxpayer money and it's unknown if Tennessee is going to be able to get any of it back.
The State Department of Economic and Community Development says it started making changes last year to address the concerns in the audit.
"Our department has worked aggressively since early 2012 when the Comptroller's staff shared preliminary audit details with the ECD to reform the state's film incentive program. That reform included working with legislative leaders to repeal the film tax credit last year. ECD has also hired an outside audit firm with expertise in the entertainment industry to audit more than a dozen different productions that were awaiting approval in early 2012," said Clint Brewer, assistant commissioner communications.
Monday, January 28 2013, 09:49 PM CST
Houston brother will be his own attorney in court
June 18, 2013 13:02 GMT
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A Roane County man will face federal gun violation charges next month without an attorney.
The Knoxville News Sentinel (http://bit.ly/17VlXpM ) reported Rocky Joe Houston will represent himself on a charge of possession of a gun by a felon.
The charge came after Houston earlier represented himself in state court on charges stemming from a police chase. He was convicted of evading arrest and reckless endangerment.
Houston and his brother, Leon Houston, were tried, but not convicted, in the 2006 shooting deaths of a Roane County deputy and his ride-along companion.
In federal court, Rocky Joe Houston is claiming the officer who charged him with the felony had no legal authority.
Information from: Knoxville News Sentinel, http://www.knoxnews.com
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