MARKHAM, Ill. (CBS) -- Tuesday night on the CBS 2 News at 10, we exposed that eight out of 10 businesses in south suburban Markham that were given federal Paycheck Protection Program loans are not licensed – and some of them don't even exist.
An investigation has now been launched less than 24 hours after CBS 2's Jermont Terry exposed ghost businesses taking those loans.
Late Wednesday, Markham Mayor Roger Agpawa confirmed a Markham police officer is now under investigation after we exposed that he received a PPP loan for a landscaping business - using the address of the Markham City Hall as the address for the business.
The city wants to verify his business, and city inspectors will soon head out to verify the addresses of those who received the taxpayer dollars.
CBS 2's report about the unlicensed PPP business loans left Markham City Council members stunned at a meeting on Wednesday night.
"I was appalled when I actually saw the video," said Markham Ald. Brenna Hampton-Houser (1st).
"I do believe there should be an investigation by the Attorney General of Illinois," said Ald. William Barron (4th).
"I want to compliment the fairness of the journalism of Channel 2 for covering that," said Mayor Agpawa.
Council members acknowledged that regulation is needed for the 1,422 unlicensed and questionable businesses that all received taxpayer-funded loans – as we uncovered.
"We can make sure that we put them on notice that if you are one of the 1,400 if that was correct with the count – 1,400 - we're coming," Hampton-Houser said. "We're regulating, and we're coming."
And amongst those from whom the city is now demanding answers is Markham police Officer Kenneth Muldrow. He is the one who received a $20,000 loan for a lawn care service where he used the police station as the address of this business.
"If you've done nothing wrong, then prove it," Barron said.
Meanwhile, Mayor Agpawa said Officer Muldrow is now the center of an internal investigation.
"It's already started," Agpawa said. "Once we got word of this on the news, we took action immediately – the administrator – and we've already got things rolling legally."
And to others who are not licensed, Mayor Agpawa said: "We're certainly going to go to those addresses. We've got their addresses. We're going to mail something to them. We're going to get some notification to them, and we want to know something in return about what you're doing in that home and that business."
The mayor said after inspectors come to homes to verify addresses, they will then notify federal authorities of their findings.
As to the internal investigation against Officer Muldrow, there is no timeframe as to how long it will take. But we do know it will entail him having to verify his business
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