DNC Host Committee can’t pay back $10 million Duke Energy loan - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

DNC Host Committee can’t pay back $10 million Duke Energy loan

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

In May of 2011, we sat down with Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers to ask him if he felt confident that the DNC Host Committee would pay back the ten million dollars of company funds Rogers decided to offer it. Rogers said yes, and pointed to the fact that he was co-chair of that Host Committee board.

"I know based on the work that we've done, and looking forward, that in all likelihood, we'll never draw down on that line of credit," Rogers told us.

But the host committee did need the credit. And now they've admitted that they can't pay Duke Energy back.

The host committee - comprised of a long list of Charlotte leaders - was in charge of raising over $36 million to bankroll the biggest party this city has ever had, the Democratic National Convention. The committee fell far short of collecting their goal.

Rogers told us that if he had not offered up Duke Energy funds, the DNC never would have happened here.

"It was a requirement to get the convention," Rogers said. "And so you know, when push comes to shove, somebody's got to step up."

But Duke energy shareholders say if Rogers wanted to step up, he should have used his own money.

"To give away ten million dollars without even giving us a vote, or even a voice," says shareholder Bonny Stilwell, "Well, I think [Rogers] should put up the money and resign immediately."

Duke Energy spokesman David Scanzoni said the whole thing will ultimately have little effect on shareholders, though. And he says rate payers won't be affected at all. On Friday, he says just four shareholders called to inquire about the issue.

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