OKLAHOMA CITY – A non-existent ZIP code in Oklahoma received nearly $12 million in stimulus funds under the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
According to Recovery.gov, 74443 received $11.9 million. But the United States Postal Service has no record of it.
It’s a problem nationwide. Earl Glynn, reporter for Kansas Watchdog in Overland Park, Kan., compiled more than $375 million in 170 ZIP codes that do not exist. This includes stimulus funds designed for grants, loans, and government contracts.
In Oklahoma, information compiled by Kansas Watchdog and by Bill McMorris at Watchdog.org show that a St. Louis, Mo.-based company, Hartman-Walsh Painting Company, received stimulus funds for “rehabilitation and painting gates (at) Fort Gibson Dam” east of Tahlequah on the Wagoner-Cherokee county line. It also notes that a dam in Kansas is to be painted as well.
The nearest community, Okay, Okla., has a ZIP code of 74446. The nearby town of Fort Gibson has a ZIP code of 74434.
The dam project has not proceeded because “bonds submitted, waiting for notice to proceed.”
As noted this week at Watchdog.org, the phantom ZIP codes listed on Recovery.gov do not necessarily reflect stimulus fraud or misuse.
This story, which was broken earlier this week by Jim Scarantino at New Mexico Watchdog, follows an earlier story about phantom congressional districts broken by Watchdog.org in November.
Oklahoma Watchdog reported 15 jobs in non-existent Oklahoma congressional districts. Listed at Recovery.gov were the 51st, 25th, 6th, 18th, 00, 24th, 14th, 13th and 57th congressional districts, all of which do not exist. Oklahoma has only five congressional districts. All subsequently were reallocated to non-specified congressional district.
About the author: Andrew Griffin is the editor of reddirtreport.com and oklahomawatchdog.org