Gardener at Barbra Streisand’s Malibu estate was paid with PPP funds: report

Gardener at Barbra Streisand’s Malibu estate was paid with PPP funds: report

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Barbra Streisand’s film company paid the groundskeeper at her $20 million Malibu estate using some of the $209,000 it received from Paycheck Protection Program loans, a new report says.

According to The New York Post, Barwood Films Ltd., the multimillionaire’s production company, received loans from the program in 2020 and 2021. The program was created by the federal government to help small businesses make payroll during the global health crisis and to prevent mass unemployment.

The Post said two workers were paid through Barwood Films in 2022 and 2021: an “executive support” employee and the groundskeeper, who is responsible for managing the gardens at Streisand’s lavish, clifftop estate.

Streisand’s spokesperson told the Post that her gardener was not paid with taxpayer funds.

Streisand, whom Forbes said is worth an estimated $430 million, has featured her English-style garden on her Instagram. Home and Gardens once described her grounds as “an idyllic oasis,” with her social media photos showing that her estate overlooks the Pacific Ocean. The Post said the garden features manicured lawns, 3,000 rose bushes, waterways and a gravesite for the star’s Coton de Tulear dog Samantha, who died in 2017.

The Post said it confirmed that the gardener was employed by Barwood Films at the time the company took PPP loans to make payroll. The company, whose registered address is Streisand’s estate, qualified as “a small business” for taxpayer-funded assistance in 2020.

Four days after the Small Business Administration opened applications for PPP loans on April 7, 2020, Barwood Films Ltd., was approved for a $103,662 loan, which the company said was to cover wages for six workers, the Post said. The next year, Barwood Films received a loan for $103,127, saying it would use the money to again meet payroll for six people.

The company also managed to have its total $209,000 in bailout loans forgiven, The Post reported. Under provisions of the program, companies could apply to have their loans and accrued interest forgiven if they spent at least 60% of their PPP funds on payroll and did not cut workers’ pay.

Over the years, Barwood Films had been a producer for a number of Streisand’s films, including “A Star Is Born” in 1976, “Yentl” in 1983, “The Prince of Tides” in 1991, and “The Mirror Has Two Faces” in 1996, according to IMDB. The company’s last credit on IMDB is for the 2017 TV special, “Barbra: The Music, the Memoirs, the Magic.”

The New York Post said that Barwood also is registered to the office of money manager Lester Knispel, who also is an assistant secretary of the Barbra Streisand Foundation and whose Boulevard Management company handles money for Sylvester Stallone and for Kardashian family members. The Post said that calls and an email to Knispel and Boulevard Management were not returned.