Taxpayers May Be Covering Extra Bailout Costs Until 2019
The Treasury Department says its bank bailouts are over, but the spending continues.
In a Sept. 22 speech, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said the bailouts "are completely behind us."
That's not quite correct. In the final six months in which it could spend money from the Troubled Asset Relief Program, Treasury set aside $243 million for new contracts for law firms, accountants and money managers to help run what's left of the bailouts — on top of the $529 million already spent on work by staff, private companies and other agencies. Many of the contracts last until 2019, and there's nothing to stop the government from hiring even more help if it's needed to chase down the remaining bailout money.