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Another Example of Corruption and Failure? HUD Halts Millions in Funding to Philadelphia Housing Authority

Should we cut funding to organizations LIKE HUD as a way to force efficiency and accountability?

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Federal housing officials have suspended millions of dollars in funding to the Philadelphia Housing Authority as federal investigators continue to examine a wide array of allegations of questionable payments made by the nation's fourth largest public housing agency.

..Under the leadership of former executive director Carl Greene, the Philadelphia housing authority spent lavishly on gifts for managers and a party with belly dancers, and secretly spent more than $500,000 in housing authority funds to settle sexual harassment claims against Greene. Greene was forced out of his $306,000 per year job in September after the housing authority's board of commissioners concluded that he was a "true serial sexual harasser" whose sought to conceal the payments from the board.

The housing authority, which receives most of its annual budget of $345 million from the federal government, has attracted the scrutiny of Congressional and federal investigators as a scandal involving allegations of waste, misconduct, and questionable spending unfolded this fall. Under Greene, the Philadelphia Housing Authority had spend more than $33 million in fees to politically-connected law firms over a three year period, according to the Inquirer.

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Also~ The problems are widespread, from an executive in New Orleans convicted of embezzling more than $900,000 in housing money around the time he bought a lavish Florida mansion to federal funds wrongly being spent to provide housing for sex offenders or to pay vouchers to residents long since dead.

Despite red flags from its own internal watchdog, HUD has continued to plow fresh federal dollars into these troubled agencies, including $218 million in stimulus funds since 2009, the joint investigation found.

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Additional Examples of HUD scandals over the years....

 

 
grlygrlz2

Asked by grlygrlz2 at 1:12 PM on Feb. 8, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 39 (106,530 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (13)
  • I would cut workers and their salaries first, and audit after that to see where else there is waste. On the other hand, I'm no fan of HUD at all. I'd prefer it be switched towards an elderly housing program rather than just providing a roof for people who live off the system. Everyone who does (or did) work is stuck with rental costs based on HUD payments ~ and they are far above what the current economy can afford. Most people who are working won't qualify and end up doing without food or letting utility and car payments go to afford their rent ... or doing without medical care. The payment rates are too high imo, and should be lowered. It isn't Joe Public's fault that many mortgages are more than the house is now worth ~ and Joe Public has his own bills, children, and expenses. If HUD continues, I think it could easily work on half the current budget along with half the current staff (and with no 6 figure salaries!).
    Farmlady09

    Answer by Farmlady09 at 3:37 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • That's disgusting.

    So what happens, then HUD doesn't make the payments to landlords, who will have to, at some point, evict? Many people see landlords as this evil person who has all this money, but I can tell you that my BIL's business has yet to run a profit. He's happy to break even at the the end of the year... but as long as some of the properties are mortgaged...he's got to pay that out of pocket if the tenant doesn't pay.

    There's a lot of time the tenant doesn't pay, or doesn't pay on time, or gives X amount of dollars when they owe Y, but still have cigarettes and a fridge full of expensive foods and beer. And yes, I can be a little judgmental here, since I go over their financial info to determine if they can afford the place that they want to rent.

    in many cases, they can, easily, but have insane spending habits.
    lovinangels

    Answer by lovinangels at 1:26 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • but any way, I got distracted, with a HUD tenant, the tenant actually pays very little out of pocket, the government pays most of it. I know several landlords that will actually forgive the tenant portion of the rent, since it's so small. (25 or 30 dollars)

    These landlords will NOT be able to continue renting to these individuals if HUD stops making payments, and if it gets out that HUD isn't paying on time, then people aren't going to want to work with them anymore. A lot of the draw with renting to people on hud is the guarantee that your money will be there on time- it's a pain in the butt to get approved...and stupid stuff, like there has to be an outlet every so many feet.

    Like when is a lack of outlets a poor living condition?
    lovinangels

    Answer by lovinangels at 1:32 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • If they are misappropriating government funds, there's a name for that which I believe attaches to some jail time. I'd go with prosecution.
    lovinangels

    Answer by lovinangels at 1:34 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • Agree with Sweet-a-kins; all halting funding does is hurt the people that need it most. What they need to do is have independent auditors review the books for EVERY program receiving federal funding once a year. Putting it in the hands of a non-government entity would be less expensive and more effective than trying to police this internally - which has obviously failed.
    Scuba

    Answer by Scuba at 1:20 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • Should we cut funding to organizations LIKE HUD as a way to force efficiency and accountability?


    No! Because the POOREST SUFFER not the paper pushers. My sisters family homeless shelter almost closed due to PA's budget fight last year....the workers would have been out of work and FAMILIES would be on the streets,,,,with infants and children...her place is run , lets just say LESS than the best.....


    but shutting it down would only HURT the most vulnerable


    I think they should start FIRING and PROSECUTING gross mismanagement of social services

    sweet-a-kins

    Answer by sweet-a-kins at 1:15 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • I didn't say "shut it down"... I questioned cutting funding as a way to force accountability

    grlygrlz2

    Comment by grlygrlz2 (original poster) at 1:23 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • cutting funding HURTS THE POOR not the people responsible

    sweet-a-kins

    Answer by sweet-a-kins at 1:38 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  • IMO~If there is money being wasted, then there is money that can be cut....
    grlygrlz2

    Comment by grlygrlz2 (original poster) at 1:43 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

  •  

    IMO~If there is money being wasted, then there is money that can be cut....

    You think the already law breaking theifs will cut from themselves ? or the POOR? its the POOR everytime

    sweet-a-kins

    Answer by sweet-a-kins at 1:48 PM on Feb. 8, 2011

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