• Orlando approves $1M repayment plan from Black Business Investment Fund


    ORLANDO, Fla. - Without any discussion, Orlando City Council members approved an agreement with an organization under fire by the state on Monday.
    The agreement allows Black Business Investment Fund to repay the city nearly $1 million over the course of 20 years, interest free.
    Channel 9's Lori Brown learned a judge has just ruled that the organization owes the state more than $1 million.
    Brown obtained a copy of the summary judgment handed down last week against BBIF
    According to the judgment, a judge found the loan fees were 12 times the amount allowed by state law.
    Eight years ago, BBIF received nearly $1 million tax dollars, but has nothing to show for the money now.
    "We have to hold them accountable for that," said Orlando city commissioner Sam Ings.
    Even though officials with BBIF cannot produce any invoices dated after the city agreed to give the organization the money, commissioners voted to let them have until 2034 to repay the money.
    The city elected to do that despite the fact the city just paid BBIF $2 million for a piece of property it sold to them for half that price.
    BBIF also receives a $125,000 annual grant from the city. If BBIF misses its annual $45,000 payment the city will use those tax dollars to repay taxpayers.
    "Why not have them pay the money back from the proceeds from the land sale?" Brown asked Ings.
    "I asked that same question, and from what I understand is that if that happened BBIF would really just go out of business. We don't want to see them go out of business," said Ings.
    Brown asked BBIF officials what they have contributed to the community recently. A representative said that she would provide Brown with that information in a few days.

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    Orlando approves $1M repayment plan from Black Business Investment Fund