Did YOU Inadvertently Help Enrich FLDS? Maybe !
If you paid taxes in the last few years, that is.
The Houston Chronicle has details. Millions in taxpayers' money helped build the sect's home and fortune -- as did labor and tithes from church members "prophet" Warren Jeffs dunned.
The market value of Yearning for Zion Ranch exceeds $21 million — with the approximately 80,000-square-foot temple valued at $8.7 million, according to the county tax appraiser. One of the county's biggest taxpayers, the sect paid last year's $424,000 bill on time.
There is little mystery about the source of all the money and manpower it took to build the ranch, according to dissident FLDS members, who still live at the sect's historic home on the Utah and Arizona border.
They say before Warren Jeffs was arrested in August 2006, the sect's self-pronounced prophet aggressively solicited the faithful at its base in Colorado City, Ariz., for donations of cash and labor to build its "New Zion" in Texas.
Yet the money didn't all come from inside the FLDS. Some came straight out of the contracts and Small Business Administration loans taxpayers' dollars fund.
he Defense Department awarded $1.2 million in contracts to an aircraft parts supplier linked to the West Texas polygamist retreat that has been unraveled by a massive child welfare investigation, according to a newspaper report.
New Era Manufacturing, based in Nevada, where the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is primarily based, also received a $900,000 federal small-business loan in 2005, according to records found by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
The money is among the millions in taxpayer dollars that have apparently helped finance the religious sect, whose property includes a compound in Eldorado where state officials are investigating allegations that children have been physically and sexually abused, the newspaper reported.
And to think, I figured Bush's emphasis on "Faith Based" services for the government wasn't serious.