This week the USA Today reported
on another example of the built-in controversy that comes with being a
company whose a recipient of government bailout money. This time it hits close to home for those of us in the fleet industry.
Facing possible bankruptcy, 500 of General Motors
best fleet customers were treated to a luxurious week at the Wild Horse
Pass Resort & Spa in Arizona, paying for airfare and lodging for
the majority of their guests.
This coming after GM borrowed $15.4 billion from the government this year. A
GM spokesperson says the event is scaled back from previous years and
is held as a way to promote GM’s 2010 products to a group that accounts
for over a quarter of the companies business.
Critics say that any company that takes government money needs to spend it wisely before it takes any more. (A reported $30 billion in additional funds may be needed for GM to avoid bankruptcy)
The controversy brings up an interesting debate on
government bailout money that seems to be a little different from the
outrage caused by other companies in the last few months that rewarded
employees with bonus packages and lavish vacations.
In the case of GM, this retreat was more about
entertaining customers and staying competitive in the very lucrative
fleet sales business. The big question is, do you want
your taxpayer money to go to financing these sales meetings, or should
GM be held to rigid fiscal responsibility until they’ve proven they are
on the road to recovery.
Let us know what you think and tell us this: Would you have gone on the trip if you were extended an invitation? Even better, if you were one of the 500 who spent the week at the resort courtesy of GM, was it as good/bad as it sounds?
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