A little-noticed state body is a fine example of bloated, useless government.
The authority was created to give loans in agricultural areas where, supposedly, such funding “it is not available at reasonable rates and terms.”
Are there really such areas in North Carolina? Apparently not: The audit showed that the authority issued only four new loans totaling a mere $622,670 in all of fiscal 2012.
As for bloat, at the end of fiscal 2012, the agency was handling 47 loans, but required seven full-time employees and one-part timer. The web site now lists six staffers. That means there is roughly one staffer for every eight loans.
So it should be no surprise that the authority has been running in the red. In the past four years, it has suffered annual losses of about $270,000.
The real question is how many other agencies have the same flaws: Dubious purposes, swollen payrolls, and gallons of red ink. It’s a safe bet that plenty of such agencies and departments honeycomb North Carolina’s government. Reforming them, or rooting them out, remains an urgent need.
(See also this story in the Triangle Business Journal.)