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We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to provide documentation showing that the acquisition component of its program has ended or improve its controls over the program to ensure that properties purchased are eligible. This recommendation includes but is not limited to updating its policies and procedures and implementing verification processes to ensure that it verifies information provided by applicants and other entities.

Publication Report

2019-NY-1001 | March 29, 2019

The State of New York Did Not Ensure That Properties Purchased Under the Acquisition Component of Its Program Were Eligible

We audited the State of New York’s Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery-funded New York Rising Buyout and Acquisition program.  We initiated this audit due to concerns related to whether properties purchased were substantially damaged… more

Related Recommendations

Community Planning and Development

  •   2019-NY-1001-001-A
    $2,595,127.00

    We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to reimburse from non-Federal funds the $2,595,127 paid to purchase six properties that were not substantially damaged. Further, the State should identify and reimburse from non-Federal funds any additional Disaster Recovery funds used to acquire and dispose of the properties.

  •   2019-NY-1001-001-B
    $783,571.00

    We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to reimburse from non-Federal funds the $783,571 paid to purchase two properties that did not comply with flood hazard requirements and for which the State did not have sufficient documentation to show that the properties were substantially damaged. Further, the State should identify and reimburse from non-Federal funds any additional Disaster Recovery funds used to acquire and dispose of the properties.

  •   2019-NY-1001-001-C
    $435,069.00

    We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to provide documentation to support the hardship letter provided for a property located outside the 500-year floodplain and documentation to show that the property was substantially damaged or reimburse from non-Federal funds the $435,069 in settlement costs paid to purchase the property. Further, the State should identify and reimburse from non-Federal funds any additional Disaster Recovery funds used to acquire and dispose of the property.

  •   2019-NY-1001-001-D
    $183,500.00

    We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to reimburse from non-Federal funds the $183,500 in incentives paid to a homeowner that failed to maintain flood insurance.

  •   2019-NY-1001-001-E
    $1,336,883.00

    We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to provide documentation to show that the five properties for which the homeowners failed to maintain flood insurance were eligible for assistance and documentation to show that the properties were substantially damaged or reimburse from non-Federal funds the $1,336,883 paid to purchase the properties, including incentives for one property. Further, the State should identify and reimburse from non-Federal funds any additional Disaster Recovery funds used to acquire and dispose of the properties.

  •   2019-NY-1001-001-F
    $4,158,836.00

    We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to provide documentation to show that the remaining nine properties were substantially damaged or reimburse from non-Federal funds the $4,158,836 paid to purchase the properties. Further, the State should identify and reimburse from non-Federal funds any additional Disaster Recovery funds used to acquire and dispose of the nine properties.

  • We recommend that HUD’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the State to conduct a review of the universe of properties purchased through the acquisition component of its program to ensure that properties were eligible and reimburse from non-Federal funds the Disaster Recovery funds used in connection with any additional properties found to be ineligible. For example, the State’s review could include verification that (1) its files contained the required substantial damage letters, (2) the letters provided by applicants reflected the most recent substantial damage determination made by local officials, (3) substantial damage determinations were adequately supported, (4) properties met flood hazard requirements, and (5) properties were not FEMA-noncompliant.