Portland Clean Energy Business Owner Indicted for Federal Loan Fraud – Willamette Week

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Portland Clean Energy Business Owner Indicted for Federal Loan Fraud – Willamette Week

A Portland clean-energy business owner has been indicted for federal loan fraud, after the U.S. Attorney for Oregon says he obtained Payroll Prote

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A Portland clean-energy business owner has been indicted for federal loan fraud, after the U.S. Attorney for Oregon says he obtained Payroll Protection Program loan money by inflating the number of employees at his companies.

Cycle Holdings was formed in November of 2019 and Cycle Power Partners was formed in 2015, state records say. “We’re a small, independent clean-power producer with a knack for creative financing and long-term project ownership,” Cycle Power Partners says on its LinkedIn page.

According to the state business registry documents, Cycle Holdings’ business activities include: “Holding company of energy, environment, infrastructure, technology, asset management, and operations and maintenance assets and services.”

Prior to founding Cycle Power Partners, Blood’s resume says he ran a similar company, Natural Capital Partners.

His companies were embroiled in the state’s troubled clean energy tax credit program.

That unsuccessful development was the last plot of land eligible for the former business energy tax credit program, which was killed by the legislature in 2010 but which preserved projects on the docket that had already been approved. (That state program was riddled with issues including fraudulent applicants, mismanagement and bribery—even resulting in fraud charges being levied against two people, one an employee of the agency.)

But Blood never completed the project, and wrote a letter to ODE two months after receiving the credit that the project was too complex and the finances too tight to go through with it. It’s unclear whether Blood kept the tax credits.

Six years later, federal prosecutors say, Blood misled the U.S. government about the size of his companies—and their need for a COVID bailout.

Payroll Protection Program loans were meant to help small businesses, whose operations were severely disrupted or stunted by the pandemic, pay their workers.

According to documents filed by the U.S. Attorney for Oregon, Blood wrote on two PPP application documents in May of 2020 that he had 10 employees and had payroll above $116,000 per month. Court documents show he has at most two employees and payroll is under $7,000 over a span of three months.

He received PPP money for both business—a combined amount over $620,000.

Blood could face up to 30 years in person if he’s found guilty. He could not be reached for comment.

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