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The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – Office of Inspector General audited Pierce County because it received almost $9 million in total funding in Washington State for its community planning and development grants under the 2011 and 2012 notices of funding availability.

The County claimed nearly $242,000 in ineligible matching funds for three HOME projects.  Since these three projects had already received HOME funding and were under affordability agreements, the matching funds reported were ineligible.  Also, the County did not support $2.6 million in HOME matching funds carried forward from prior years.  As a result, it had a shortfall of nearly $395,000 in its match obligation for the program year beginning July 2008 and could be required to repay HUD almost $1.6 million in HOME funds, depriving low-income people in its jurisdiction of needed housing.

We recommend that the Director of the Seattle Office of Community Planning and Development require the County to remove nearly $242,000 in ineligible matching funds from its HOME match carry forward and provide almost $395,000 in eligible matching funds to its HOME trust fund from non-Federal sources or repay HUD up to nearly $1.6 million.  We also recommend the County resubmit its match reports to calculate a new carry forward amount supported by a running match log and documentation, and implement written policies and procedures for compliance with HOME requirements.  The County has provided proposed corrective actions to HUD for its review.