We audited the Virgin Islands Housing Finance Authority’s monitoring of its Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR)-funded activities. We initiated the audit because of the large amount of CDBG-DR funds awarded to the U.S. Virgin Islands for the 2017 disasters and to aid in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) strategic objective to support effectiveness and accountability in long-term disaster recovery.
Our objective was to determine whether the Authority effectively monitored its CDBG-DR-funded activities administered by itself and its subrecipients to ensure that the national objectives and performance measures were met.
The Authority did not effectively monitor its CDBG-DR-funded activities. Specifically, it did not (1) assess the activities’ performance during its monitoring, (2) consistently track the status of corrective actions, (3) verify that the activities’ national objectives were or are being met, and (4) consistently monitor the activities. These deficiencies occurred because the Authority lacked policies and detailed procedures to guide its staff on effectively monitoring and tracking corrective actions and ensure performance metrics included in subrecipient agreements were assessed. Therefore, HUD could not be assured that activities were progressing, identified deficiencies were corrected, and funds were used for authorized purposes.
We recommend that the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Grant Programs require the Authority to develop and implement monitoring policies and detailed procedures to ensure that an activity’s performance is assessed, corrective actions in monitoring reports are tracked, and documentation supporting the national objectives is verified. In addition, we recommend that the Authority revise subrecipient agreements to include performance metrics and milestones that are tailored to the activity.