State auditor demands solar panel company pay $93 million

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Rogelio V. Solis, AP

Republican State Auditor Stacey Pickering

State Auditor Stacey Pickering demands Stion Corp., a solar panel maker which closed its Hattiesburg plant last year, pay nearly $93 million owed to state and local governments. Pickering said Tuesday it is the largest amount he has ever demanded a company repay.

Stion is the latest in a series of failed green energy companies that received loans and incentives from the state. The San Jose, Calif., company borrowed $74.8 million from Mississippi, failed to pay $2.1 million in reduced property taxes to Hattiesburg and Forrest County and owes $16 million in interest on the state loan and property tax payments, according to Pickering’s calculations.

Stion has 30 days to repay or face a civil lawsuit, Pickering said.

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