Saturday, April 07, 2007

N.Y. Times on HUD mandated changes to Road Home

First the national politicians don't want to give money for recovery because of Louisiana's "reputation for corruption." So we create a program with multiple safeguards against fraud. Now HUD wants us to make things easier for recipients by giving lump-sum payments. So the prospect of corruption and fraud emerges again. We just can't win.
Louisiana homeowners may get faster access to rebuilding grants after a federal decision late last month that is forcing the state to change its slow-moving $7.5-billion “Road Home” program to repair houses damaged or destroyed by hurricanes in 2005.

But the changes, which should be detailed next week, have raised concerns that some homeowners will not use their grants of up to $150,000 for repairs or could lose them to fraud or debt, potentially leading to increased blight in hard-hit areas.

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