Housing authority begins overhaul after poor HUD report

David Lange (Source: KAIT-TV)
David Lange (Source: KAIT-TV)

POINSETT COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - After an alarming report from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, one Region 8 housing authority is undergoing a huge overhaul, including an entirely new set of board members.

Perhaps the biggest problem is figuring out how to pay back almost $500,000 from "unsupported and unallowed costs."

According to the report from HUD, the previous director misused federal money, hired several family members without board approval, and obtained contracts against federal regulatory standards.

That director has since resigned.

A new group of board members and Interim Director David Lange are in now in place.

Lange said they're now working to rebuild, which will mean improvements for the residents.

"We hope to see improvements in pest control, we also will be accountable and quicker to respond to needs such as we found that some of the residents had inadequate refrigerators and stoves and we're working to replace those that are damaged or not working properly," Lange said. "We want to upgrade as much as we can, the whole facility."

Lange said one of the problems they'll be facing in the very near future is HUD expecting a repayment process of that nearly half a million dollar debt.

Lange said he has met with the HUD Little Rock Director and the Fort Worth, Texas Regional Manager.

Both are willing to work with Poinsett County Housing Authority to get that process started when they're able to.

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