RICHMOND, Calif. – Richmond’s public housing agency has been racked by years of mismanagement, financial abuse and conflicts of interest, The Center for Investigative Reporting has found.
The Richmond Housing Authority is running a nearly $7 million deficit and has to repay $2.2 million for past contracting mistakes. The federal government is threatening to take control of the housing authority this year if key financial benchmarks are not met.
In 2012, Richmond failed to collect more than $157,000 in rent from tenants, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s most recent inspection.
As its finances spiraled out of control and residents’ basic needs went ignored, the authority spent lavishly, records show.
Its executive director, Tim Jones, charged hundreds of dollars on meals in New York and Washington, including a roughly $400 meal at an upscale midtown Manhattan restaurant where a strip steak with truffle fries runs $41.
The meals cost as much as many public housing tenants pay each month in rent.
Jones’ pay also increased about 30 percent over three years as the authority ran up debt.
Meanwhile, the housing authority’s finance manager improperly used public money for personal use, putting gas and meals on the agency credit card, records show. Federal inspectors in 2012 called his financial knowledge inadequate, saying he routinely failed to provide basic paperwork detailing the authority’s finances. He’s still working at the agency.
The authority also made several late payments on the agency credit card, triggering late fees, records show.
HUD discovered that the No. 2 man at the agency had steered contracts to his brother and wanted him banned from doing work with the federal government. Two years later, the housing authority paid for his retirement party, violating city rules.
These revelations come on top of CIR’s findings of deplorable conditions for residents who occupy the authority’s two largest housing complexes. Residents there are dealing with severe rodent and insect infestations, mold-ridden walls and a slow reaction to fix basic maintenance problems like plumbing leaks and broken heaters.
Lax security has enabled squatters to take up residence in some of the authority’s vacant units. Richmond now ranks among one of the nation’s worst public housing authorities, according to federal data.
To tell this story, CIR reviewed hundreds of pages of HUD audits, internal memos and report cards dating back a decade that show the troubled housing authority veering further and further out of control. Until now, the story of the housing authority’s financial abuses has not been told.
“The place is being badly managed, poorly managed, and something has got to change,” said Jackie Thompson, a resident who serves on the authority’s tenant advisory commission.
Jones has been in charge since 2005. He blames the housing authority’s troubles on his predecessor. He said the authority has cut its staff significantly, has a plan to get out of debt and is working closely with HUD to make fixes.
“When I arrived, we had a staff of 65,” Jones said. “Now there’s a staff of about 28. We are lean here. There is no fat.”
Jones did not respond to numerous requests for follow-up interviews once the extent of the authority’s financial abuses became clear.
Bill Lindsay, Richmond’s city manager, has asked HUD to give Jones a chance to turn the authority around.
“He inherited some terrible staff that he can’t unload,” he said. “He took something that was in dismal shape, and he made cuts and stopped this place from really heading for financial disaster.”
But the documents show how the financial problems and mismanagement have festered on Jones’ watch.
“The current executive director has been there approximately 6 years, but few improvements have been made,” according to a June 18, 2012,HUD memo. “The financial condition of the authority has gotten worse by the year, and based on audit findings from as far back as 2009 … the total lack of internal controls has contributed significantly to the authority’s current condition.”
The abuses weighed on the minds of HUD officials, who wondered in memos whether firing Jones would solve the problems. But the memos say that Mayor Gayle McLaughlin and the City Council likely would oppose such a move and that there was no qualified successor in the organization.
It’s now do-or-die for the Richmond Housing Authority.
After years of being warned about money and bookkeeping problems, it is being forced to overhaul its public housing operation. HUD says that so far, Richmond is making progress. But officials there have threatened to seize control of the authority if key benchmarks – such as turning in audits on time and getting out of debt – are not met this year.
To get out of debt and pay fines, Richmond is selling an apartment complex that was supposed to be a long-term source of funding for the agency. Officials also said they have a more permanent solution. They have a $65 million plan to refurbish four of the authority’s five public housing complexes and turn them over to private management.
The fate of its worst complex, Hacienda, is still undecided.
The Richmond Housing Authority gets about $26 million a year from the federal government to provide safe and decent housing for the needy. In addition to its 715 housing units for poor, elderly and disabled residents, the authority provides Section 8 vouchers to 1,750 Richmond residents who can use these subsidies to pay rent anywhere in the city.
In 2005, the authority was in trouble.
The executive director lacked basic skills, its files were in shambles and staff couldn’t carry out rudimentary bookkeeping, documents show. Federal auditors swooped in and came up with a 250-point plan on how to turn around the agency. One of their solutions: Hire a qualified executive director.
Richmond brought in Jones, the Oakland Housing Authority’s housing management director, to fix the broken agency. For a few years, it looked like he’d turned the place around. Employees got basic training. A new activist mayor, McLaughlin, made economic injustice a rallying cry.
Then HUD got a tip that something was amiss.
Manuel Rosario, Jones’ No. 2 man at the agency, had steered $61,000 in contracts to his brother in 2008 and 2009, HUD’s inspector general found. Rosario sat on a committee that gave his brother’s company an inspection contract. Months later, the contract was renewed for a year even though it didn’t have an option to be extended.
Rosario, HUD documents say, also arranged for his brother to get more housing authority work. Jones was supposed to sign off on these documents. But he didn’t.
In a properly run system, the absence of these basic functions would have raised red flags. HUD wanted Rosario banned from working with the federal government in 2009. Jones wouldn’t say whether he fired Rosario, but the agency did pay for his retirement pizza party with taxpayer funds, records show. City policies prohibit spending public money on these kinds of events. It’s unclear from the records how much the party cost.
Rosario could not be reached for comment.
In total, the federal investigation found the agency had misspent $2.4 million on contracts over the previous decade. While some of that activity occurred under the previous leadership, the report uncovered a host of misdeeds by the new management team.
The authority messed up its competitive bidding process for contracts, and it approved payments to contractors without proof that the work had been done.
HUD trained authority staff on how to write and manage contracts. Jones, meanwhile, began overseeing contracts. But the problems continued. In 2012, seven out of 25 housing authority payments reviewed by auditors didn’t have documents that backed up the work that was done.
“The executive director claims he is now the procurement officer, but despite attending procurement training, he lacks the procurement knowledge required to comply with requirements and disregards many requirements,” according to a 2012 internal HUD memo.
Jones, who by this point had been on the job for more than six years, continued to blame the previous administration for the breakdown in contracts. “We’re trying to find a way to fix it,” he said in an interview with CIR.
The housing authority is in the process of repaying $2.2 million for its contracting mistakes. It made its first payment in July. The agency told HUD that the payments would “severely undermine the Housing Authority’s fiscal stability.”
HUD delivers an annual report card on each of the more than 4,000 housing agencies across the country. And Richmond’s low marks have placed it among the nation’s worst housing authorities every year since 2009.
The Richmond authority repeatedly has missed its deadlines to file annual financial reports with HUD. If it had turned in the audits on time, federal officials would have seen sooner that Richmond was running out of money.
The agency has overspent its budget nearly every year since 2007. Instead of making ends meet, the housing authority regularly went to the city to help pay its workers’ salaries, gradually piling up debts.
After Richmond got low financial marks again in 2011, HUD sent in a team of specialists.
The specialists found that as the housing authority was going deeper into a financial hole, top officials were loading up the expense accounts.
On a trip to New York in November 2009, Jones got the authority to pay for a $417.34 meal at Fabio Piccolo Fiore, a high-end Italian restaurant, HUD documents show. In Washington, he had taxpayers fund $130.60 and $279.90 meals at an upscale soul-food restaurant called Georgia Brown’s in 2008 and 2010.
HUD found the charges to be excessive, according to a review that stretched from 2008 to 2011. In addition to charging the meals, Jones appears to have billed taxpayers a $40 stipend each day he traveled, records show. Government officials are supposed to limit their meals to the per diem costs, so they shouldn’t be charging meals at all.
Jones also charged taxpayers for meals closer to home. He took his staff to the Italian restaurant Salute E Vita, which overlooks the Richmond marina, three times in three weeks, racking up tabs as high as $195. In the three years reviewed by auditors, Jones charged 23 meals from this restaurant at an average of about $80 a meal, HUD records show.
The City of Richmond’s policy specifically prohibits employees from expensing work lunches with other city employees.
Jones approved all his own credit card charges with no outside oversight. “There were no internal controls to ensure that such activity does not occur,” auditors wrote. Jones declined to comment on the credit cards.
One of the few people who could have spotted the abuse was the finance manager. But he also was abusing his credit card, documents show.
Tony Taplin, the housing authority’s finance manager, used the card to fix his car, fill it with gas and buy personal meals. The city said all unauthorized purchases were eventually repaid.
Taplin didn’t respond to requests for comment.
The housing authority also catered its Board of Commissioners meetings, which consist of the City Council and advisory commission members. One catering bill in 2008 came to $2,142.24.
City officials have since canceled the agency credit cards.
As the finances worsened, Jones’ salary kept rising. The city’s community and economic development director gave Jones a total of 31 percent in raises from 2008 to 2011, at a time when the agency didn’t have enough money to make payroll, HUD auditors found. Auditors described the raises as aggressive.
In the year after the housing authority first was labeled one of the worst in the country, Jones made $205,000 in salary and benefits, according to a survey four years ago of housing authority executives in California. He was in the top third of the highest-paid housing heads in the state, according to the HUD survey.
His pay since has dropped as the housing authority’s budget has gone down. In 2012, he made almost $187,000 a year in salary and benefits, according to city payroll records. HUD no longer ranks executive director pay.
In 2012, the agency ran $5.8 million into the red. By 2013, it owed the city almost $7 million.
Jones would not answer questions about his pay or his expenses.
He said the agency’s finances are getting better. “Our mission is our mission. It can be done as long as we’re trending north,” he said.
HUD found problems beyond the staff. Its inspectors faulted the board, which includes the mayor, for allowing the agency to rack up debt year after year.
“The Board of Commissioners do not appear to have sufficient knowledge of Housing Authority operations, programs, financial condition, or activities, and as a result, have not provided proper oversight of the Executive Director,” according to a 2013 HUD document.
The executive director reports directly to the city manager. The City Council occupies seven seats on the nine-member authority board. An advisory board of residents and community members can make recommendations. And HUD inspectors audit and inspect the housing units annually.
Lindsay took over the housing authority’s finances in 2012. McLaughlin, who as mayor serves as board chairwoman, said she was not aware of the financial abuses at the agency or Jones’ pay increases.
She said once Richmond completes the sale of one of its buildings, it will be debt-free and off HUD’s troubled list. She also pointed the finger at HUD for cutting public housing budgets.
“HUD needs to realize that the federal government is being negligent in its responsibility to provide public housing funds for cities that have experienced decades of economic injustices,” she said.
When later confronted with questions about Jones’ expenses and pay, McLaughlin deferred to Lindsay.
There is only one other housing authority in California that is currently on the troubled list: San Francisco. After it was labeled troubled, Mayor Ed Lee cleaned house. He replaced most of the members of the board of commissioners and hired a new executive director.
There has been no such change in Richmond.
Troubles with rent collection
Richmond’s most recent federal report card is its worst yet.
Housing agencies are rated on a 100-point system, and Richmond got a 47 on its report released in 2013. Anything below 60 is failing. In addition to financial problems, HUD gave the authority failing marks for its management.
The housing authority is essentially a landlord: It’s supposed to collect tenants’ rent, ensure properties aren’t in disrepair and make sure that people in public housing qualify for the subsidy. But hundreds of thousands of dollars of rent has gone uncollected. The authority also has fallen behind on checking residents’ incomes.
Last year, the Richmond Housing Authority was one of the only agencies in California that hadn’t completed the minimum number of income checks for residents, according to federal data. Without checking these finances, tenants could be charged too much rent, or they might make too much money to qualify for public housing.
The dysfunction trickles down to tenants living in the housing projects.
Residents say the agency routinely misplaces their checks and slaps residents with a $25 late fee even when they pay on time. For residents on a fixed income, they say that can mean five meals.
Juanita Hasnat is a double amputee and former nurse. She has lived in Richmond public housing for more than three years. She said she’s paid her $233-a-month rent on time each month since she moved in. But last month and this month, she got a note from the housing agency that she was late on rent and had to pay a penalty.
“If your people put it in late, it’s not on me,” Hasnat said at a public meeting in January.
Jones told her that he’d look into the issue and, if Hasnat was correct, he’d give her an apology in writing.
The Housing Advisory Commission, a group of tenants and community members that airs resident complaints, repeatedly has brought up the late rent issue to no avail.
“It’s management,” said Commissioner Sylvia Gray-White. “They don’t seem to have a clue what they’re doing.”
Do Santa Clara County Sheriff deputies lie? As the old saying goes “A chain is only as strong as its weakest link” so when Bad Apple police officers like detectives David Carroll and Samy Tarazi lie, it destroys the integrity of all police everywhere and further erodes public trust.
It’s one thing having a few bad officers and another when an entire department abuses their authority and “blatantly lies”. To fabricate violations of law so that law is used as a tool to stop people from reporting corruption, crime by judges, lawyers, social workers, police and an entire county running amuck.
What has happened in Santa Clara County California is a total injustice. An honest man reports violations of rights and corruption. He files a federal whistleblower complaint with the County Executive’s office. instead of investigating and prosecuting those responsible for the crimes that occurred, the County Executive’s office dispatched the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Department after Mr. Crittenden to stalk him, harass him, oppress him and ultimately to frame him for a crime he did not commit.
See Also EAH Housing Eviction Fraud Scandal
Digging deeper, Crittenden and his team learn that judges, lawyers, the DA and officials from many County agencies are corrupt & orchestrating a massive harassment campaign and the Public defender is giving the green light to the sheriff’s departments hammering out false police reports.
The Santa Clara County Executive is Pressuring the Santa Clara County Public Defender’s office to ignore the falsified police reports, Prosecutorial misconduct and to cooperate with the Malicious prosecution, and to suppress evidence clearly proving that fraud was committed to secure the wrongful conviction.
The Assistant District Attorney even directed the Sheriff’s Department to threaten his family and friends and had Crittenden arrested in retaliation for publishing news article about Case# C1493022 plus filed a fake restraining order against him.
The objective is to suppress Crittenden from exposing the corruption which has infected an entire county, prevent him from advocating for and empowering crime victims and to put fear into the hearts of good law abiding citizens that they too
could become targets if they dare to speak out against the brutal criminal syndicate that has invested and entrenched itself in Santa Clara County government and their Judicial System.
Please help make this matter very public.
Please contact Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian at Joe.Simitian@bos.sccgov.org or call (408) 299-5050
Request that the Public Defender’s office investigate the false police reports and stop suppressing evidence proving that fraud has occurred and to STOP THE MALICIOUS PROSECUTION OF CARY-CRITTENDEN
Please share far and wide on all social networks & generate many phone calls and emails from around the world.
Lllldll Lllldll, a
What is happening at Effie’s House and EBALDC is just one bright shining example of what is happening throughout the City of Oakland in the many subsidized housing projects owned by numerous non-profit housing developers that are members of the East Bay Housing Organizations (EBHO)!
Oakland – As important as HUD and it’s subsidized housing programs are to veterans, the poor, elderly and disabled, corruption is rampant from the top to the bottom in the realm of HUD and it’s tax payer subsidized housing programs. Corruption that is unfair to the homeless and low-income persons on the waiting lists trying to get into a so-called affordable housing project.
As just one example, the East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation (EBALDC) is one of Oakland’s largest nonprofit housing developers using tax credits to fund it’s subsidized housing projects for the poor, in addition to providing housing to low-income tenants with Section 8 vouchers, and Shelter Plus Vouchers. Additionally, EBALDC receives funding from the Home Program, and federal subsidized Section 8 Project-Based Vouchers in addition to grants and funding from numerous other federal programs being used to subsidize and fund it’s many so-called affordable housing sites, and programs.
Politically active like many others in the multi-billion dollar affordable housing industry, public records from the Federal Election Commission (FEC) reveal that during 2012 EBALDC gave $100 to Obama For America.
In it’s website EBALDC claims to have developed 1,918 homes to house around 3,600 people in the East Bay. EBALDC also claims that the organization directly manages 1,126 residential rental units in 19 properties, and have developed and manage more than 300,000 square feet of commercial space at their properties.
What is not being told to the public and tax payers who subsidize EBALDC’s rental properties in Oakland and the East Bay is that EBALDC has been providing tax payer subsidized housing to some of it’s employees in their numerous subsidized housing sites.
Additionally, it appears that it is totally legal to provide subsidized housing to the friends and relatives of EBALDC’s employees, and often they get preferential treatment over persons on the housing waiting lists including the homeless, elderly, and disabled desperately seeking affordable housing. In comparison, these types of activities are totally prohibited in public housing projects all across the nation.
The rules and regulations are not nearly as rigid for the non-profit housing developers receiving federal funds in the so-called affordable housing industry as they are for the nation’s 3,100 Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) that provide public housing, and Section 8 vouchers to the poor.
The PHAs receive their funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to fund their programs. Many affordable housing developers receive funding from local PHAs that provide Section 8 Project-Based Vouchers to the non-profit housing developers in the affordable housing industry. The Project-Based Vouchers are used to fund long-term subsidized housing projects owned by non-profit organizations in the affordable housing industry.
One might even say that the so-called affordable housing industry has totally corrupted the original intent of the public housing program that it cannot compete with, and has been desperately trying to destroy in it’s efforts to grab as much federal funding as is possible for it’s own for profit housing projects. Currently the affordable housing industry is moving as fast as possible to promote the privatization of public housing, and many non-profit housing developers are seeking federal funding through the Rental Assistance Demonstration program (RAD) in the effort to grab as many public housing units as is possible to add to their own empire.
Corruption In Affordable Housing
Indeed, corruption is rampant in the affordable housing industry. As an example, Effie’s House is a 21 unit subsidized housing project owned by EBALDC in Oakland. EBALDC got it’s hands on the property in a sweetheart deal back in 1997 through the City of Oakland when the owner at that time could not afford to replace a broken boiler system in the building. The tenants spent around a year or more without any heat or hot water in the building before EBALDC took control of the property.
Fast forward to 2014. During October of 2014, Katherine Mull, a well compensated Property Manager for EBALDC who works in their main office and oversees their commercial properties jumped ahead of the line on the housing “waiting list” and moved into a studio apartment at Effie’s House. Top management at EBALDC gave her the title of “On-site Manager” at Effie’s House, and one of the first things Katherine Mull did when moving in was to allow her boyfriend to move into the subsidized housing unit with her. A boyfriend who was also allowed to jump ahead of all the others on a waiting list to move into the subsidized housing project. Management declines to state whether or not the boyfriend went through any back-ground checks, or an income certification process before moving into the building.
Since Danny Chen is the Property Manager at Effie’s House and can be found on-site in the building office 4-days a week at the location, and notices to the tenants advising them not to bother Katherine Mull unless it is an emergency, the tenants are not certain what Katherine Mull actually does at Effie’s House as the so-called On-site Manager.
The tenants generally call 911 when there is a real emergency, or they contact Property Manager Danny Chen. Additionally, the tenants have also been advised by notice not to call Mull on her cell phone, and have been told by management that if they lose the keys to their apartment that it is not an emergency. Being too poor to afford a locksmith when losing their keys and finding themselves locked out of their homes is definitely an emergency for the tenants at Effie’s House, no matter what EBALDC may falsely claim.
According to state law property managers are required to have a real estate license, but a check of the records for the Department of Real Estate reveals that property manager’s Katherine Mull and Danny Chen do not have a real estate license.
What is happening at Effie’s House and EBALDC is just one bright shining example of what is happening throughout the City of Oakland in the many subsidized housing projects owned by numerous non-profit housing developers that are members of the East Bay Housing Organizations (EBHO).
Obama Is Pushing For Further Corruption Of HUD’s Subsidized Housing Programs
Making matters worse, in the latest federal budget proposals released by the Obama administration during the first week of February, Obama is pushing for the further weakening of the rules and regulations for Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) all across the nation. The President is pushing for the expansion of the Moving To Work (MTW) demonstration program that has already totally corrupted around 35 housing authorities across the nation. There are currently around 35 MTW housing authorities and they do not have to abide by the normal rules and regulations that around 3,100 other housing authorities have to abide by. MTWs are allowed to mix all of their administration fees, public housing funding and Section 8 funding from HUD into one big slush fund. A slush fund that lacks transparency, and makes it very difficult to follow where all the money is really going.
Authorized by Congress in 1996, the Moving To Work (MTW) demonstration program was created for a limited number of PHAs to try out new and different ways to save money, and find cheaper methods to deliver housing services. However, MTWs have morphed into agencies that have become notorious for abusing the funding from Congress. Funding that was meant to assist the poor.
As an example, HUD was under fire by an April 19, 2012, report that was issued on May 21, 2012 by the Government Accounting Office (GAO), that ridicules any assertions by HUD that an MTW’s activities can be evaluated properly.
The GAO is an investigative arm of Congress with the power to examine matters related to the receipt and use of funding by Congress, and the GAO believes that MTWs are not regulated enough to properly evaluate how they are operating.
As was reported by the National Low-Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), during a March 29, 2012 oversight hearing of THUD and DOT programs in Washington D.C., HUD Inspector General David Montoya (IG) publicly criticized the Public Housing Authority of Philadelphia, as an example of the corruption of MTWs.
Montoya (IG) stated that the PHA in Philadelphia is an MTW demonstration program that was legally allowed to use $1.1 million of it’s funding to fight against the oversight of the IG’s office, and was allowed to use money to hire outside legal counsel to shadow “IG staff” that were auditing the housing authority, when it should have used the money on housing poor people instead.
Since it was legal for that MTW to operate in such a way, apparently all other MTWs are allowed to abuse funds that were meant to be used for housing needs, to fight against audits by the HUD Inspector General’s office.
At the same hearing, Montoya (IG) also stated that removing the MTW status from the PHA in Philadelphia would be a first good step to resolve the problems the IG is aware of at that housing authority since 2004, according to a March 30, release by the National Low-Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC).
According to the GAO report, the information available from HUD about MTWs varies, and the GAO report further revealed that HUD has declined to specify in it’s rules and regulations that the performance information from an MTW must be quantifiable and outcome oriented. The lack of rules and regulations has corrupted and hampered efforts to determine if MTWs are functioning properly, and places hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding at risk of misuse, and abuse.
Further expansion of the MTW program would only jeopardize millions of dollars more in tax payer subsidies that are meant to assist the poor, but may be used for other reasons.
HUD has not established a process to assess compliance with statutory requirements for MTWs, and the report further states that HUD lacks the assurance needed to determine that an MTW is complying with the statute that governs how an MTW is supposed to operate.
Additionally, “HUD has not identified the performance data that would be needed to assess the results of similar MTW activities or the program as a whole, and has not established performance indicators for the program,” according to the GAO.
The MTW program is wide open to corruption and abuse, and according to the GAO report, “HUD has not done an annual assessment of program risks despite its own requirement to do so and has not developed risk-based monitoring procedures.”
Additionally, the GAO report reveals that HUD cannot verify the accuracy of information being self-reported by MTWs to HUD, and the GAO reports that HUD does not have any policies or procedures active that are needed to verify what is actually going on in an MTW housing authority.
Recent Report Exposes Major Corruption In HUD
According to public records, a February 4, 2015 testimony of David A. Montoya, Inspector General (IG), reveals that there has been massive fraud occurring in the upper ranks of management in HUD.
Recent shocking revelations in the testimony of David. A. Montoya before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations reveals that HUD officials have been trying too cover up serious violations of ethical, lobbying and other violations at HUD including the hiring of convicted criminals for key housing positions.
During the committee meeting Montoya revealed that since 2013 HUD officials have allegedly been involved in major ethical violations, hiring violations, and illegal lobbying. This included the hiring of Debra Gross, an affordable housing insider from the Council of Large Public Housing Authorities (CLPHA) who was put in charge of regulatory reform at HUD while still holding a position in the organization (CLPHA) that lobbies Congress and the President on behalf of the affordable housing industry, and public housing authorities across the nation.
It is a good thing for people to lobby Congress and the President for full funding for HUD’s subsidized housing programs meant to assist the poor, but the breakdown in HUD’s polices in recent years reveals how corrupt the system has become.
According to Montoya’s testimony there has been an institutional breakdown in HUD’s policies, which appears to reflect the corruption occurring in HUD’s housing programs from the top to the bottom of the nation’s so-called affordable housing industry.
Despite on-going massive budget cuts to HUD’s housing programs, HUD has done great work for many years in the effort to promote public housing and the Section 8 voucher program that assists the poor with their housing needs. However, since members of the affordable housing industry including members from Bridge Housing and other multi-billion dollar so-called non-profit housing organizations have totally infiltrated the upper ranks of management at HUD, the lobbyists have been promoting reform changes in HUD’s subsidized housing programs that are detrimental to the needs of the poor. The members of the affordable housing industry that have infiltrated HUD are pushing for reforms that are resulting in the privatization of our nation’s 1.2 million public housing units.
Additionally, the affordable housing industry is lobbying Congress and HUD for Rental Assistance Reform (RAR) that will result in higher rents for the poor in HUD’s subsidized housing programs. Reforms being pushed for by the so-called affordable housing industry will also result in Section 8 vouchers being taken away from the poor so that they can be converted to Project-Based Vouchers that the non-profit housing developers can use to fund their own so-called affordable housing projects.
Unfortunately for the poor, most non-profit housing developers have “minimum income requirements” at their so-called affordable housing projects that discriminate against the poor.
For more about the recent testimony about corruption at HUD click on the links further below…
David Montoya testimony of corruption at HUD
Perez testimony of corruption at HHUD