The list of recipients of Emerging Technology Fund grants in particular is replete with Perry’s longtime friends and campaign contributors. The Dallas Morning News has reported on who received some of these grants, and have contributed large sums to his campaigns. The list includes:
•$2.75 million to Terrabon Inc., a Houston company. Its backers have included Phil Adams, a college friend of Perry’s who has given his campaign at least $314,000.
•$1.75 million to Gradalis Inc., a Carrollton firm. Among its investors has been Dr. James R. Leininger, who has contributed more than $264,000 to Perry’s campaigns.
•$1.5 million to ThromboVision Inc., a Houston company. One of its investors was Charles W. Tate, who has donated more than $424,000 to Perry. Tate was on the board of CPRIT, the state agency that was designed to “cure” cancer.
•$4.5 million to Convergen Lifesciences Inc. of Austin. The company was founded by David G. Nance, a former Perry appointee who has given the governor $80,000.
•$2 million to Seno Medical Instruments Inc. of San Antonio. Its investors have included Southwest Business Corp. and its subsidiaries, whose chairman, Charles Amato, gave Perry more than $32,000.
•$975,000 to Carbon Nanotechnologies Inc. of Houston. At the time of the award, one investor was William A. McMinn, who has contributed $152,000 to Perry.
In an interview with The News, Perry said he usually does not know if his campaign supporters have financial interests in the companies that get tech fund money. Sure. This from a guy who knows everything that goes on in state government. All I can say is that this doesn’t pass the smell test. I suspect that Straus’s committee, assuming that they do their homework, will reach the same olfactory conclusion.