I feel bad for the folks at Schott Solar who just got laid off. But I also feel bad for New Mexico taxpayers (like me) who have been sold a pig in a poke by Governor Richardson and other politicians who have repeatedly thrown money at unproven technologies and business models. In the case of Schott Solar, we’re talking about $130 million.
The truth is that the slowing economy is but one of many factors negatively impacting Schott. Competition from cheaper producers in China is another. The real issue is that Richardson does not have his own money at stake and he is no expert in solar power or investing. Hopefully Schott is able to re-group and limp its way to the next economic recovery, but that $130 million taxpayer investment is looking mighty precarious at this point.