Thiokol Corp. President U. Edwin Garrison says the aerospace company opposed a $10 million loan to McDonnell Douglas from the beginning, not after the fact as state officials maintain.

Garrison contends the loan to McDonnell Douglas encourages the company to give business to Thiokol's Utah aerospace rival, Hercules.In a letter to Thiokol's 7,000 employees, Garrison demanded the state "correct this inequity."

The letter, dated March 26, con-flicts with recent statements from Gov. Norm Bangerter, the Legislature and the state agency that negotiated the loan that they didn't hear of Thiokol's opposition until too late.

The loan was approved by the state Legislature in February at Ban-gerter's urging.

Garrison told Thiokol workers that corporate directors will insist that any favoritism in awarding of rich contracts be avoided.

"The state authored, negotiated and signed the (McDonnell Douglas) agreement despite our objections," he wrote. "We expect them to take the necessary action to correct this inequity."

Bangerter's office refused to comment on the letter.

But Stan Parrish, director of the state Department of Community and Economic Development, said Friday that Thiokol raised no concerns until March 18.