The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


December 19, 2013

HUD tightens rules in wake of Point Twp. grant problem

LEWISBURG — PHILADELPHIA — The federal agency that disperses both housing and community development grants to Pennsylvania now will require a much greater level of oversight and documentation when it hands out money — this, as a result of a botched grant program for low- and moderate-income housing in Point Township, Northumberland County.

The township originally received a $318,000 HOME grant in 2004 for building a 16-unit housing complex called Kingspointe. Fourteen units were to be sold to low- and moderate-income buyers in the Home Investment Partnership, or HOME, program.

The project ultimately failed to meet affordability requirements, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, said, and it wanted its money back.

The state Department of Community and Economic Development originally ordered Point Township to repay the money because it was felt that municipal officials failed to adequately document how the Yoder Group, of Turbotville — which was hired to construct the homes — spent the grant. That matter was seemingly cleared up to DCED’s satisfaction, but HUD still had questions.

It now appears that the Yoder Group is in consultation with township officials, HUD and DCED administrators about who will reimburse HUD for the $318,000, and when.

Meanwhile, HUD drafted a Nov. 8 letter to Nadab Bynum, DCED director, outlining the new procedures in oversight responsibilities when the agency doles out grant money. That letter was obtained by Point Township resident Mark Heintzelman, who made a Right to Know request for information about the monitoring of the HOME grant money.

Heintzelman released the letter Wednesday.

In the letter, DCED is told that in the future, “For all HOME grants, DCED will require all home buyers and rental projects involving developers to submit a draft copy of the developer’s agreement with the application.”

If  that application is approved, HUD said, the sub-grantee, which in this case, for example, was Point Township, will not be permitted to set the project up until DCED receives a signed copy of the agreement.

A second requirement is a revised review process.

HUD will require DCED to provide full supporting documentation for all HOME and Community Development Block Grant funding. “Reviewing this process, DCED will require that all draws be approved by DCED prior to the sub-grantee drawing funds through the agency’s Integrated Disbursement & Information System,” according to the letter.

Further, DCED will require that sub-grantees submit an invoice for approval to DCED.

DCED then will be required to conduct a preliminary review of all invoices to assure compliance with contract time frames, consistency with contract budgets and that the costs are certified.

Attempts to reach Bynum on Thursday were unsuccessful.

Text Only
  • Jay Paterno sues Penn State for 'rush to judgment'

    STATE COLLEGE - Two former Penn State assistant football coaches, including a son of the late Joe Paterno, are suing the university, alleging that it fired them prematurely after the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal surfaced.

    July 23, 2014

  • 400-pound bull on the lam

    State police and a western Pennsylvania cattle owner are looking for a 2-year-old bull that has been missing for more than a week.

    July 23, 2014

  • Complainer: Cars whiz by, and drivers take whiz

    The Pennsylvania Turnpike has asked state police to increase patrols near an area of the toll road where a woman says she can see motorists exposing and relieving themselves near her backyard.

    July 23, 2014

  • spider24online.jpg Arachnid alert!

    We came across this spider brunching on another today near the American Legion post in Herndon. We aren't sure what type of spiders they are. Particularly the one with the full stomach. Do you?

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Today's Editorial: Experts showing the way for reform

    Domestic abuse remains one of the most prevalent crimes nationally yet remains routinely unreported.

    July 23, 2014

  • Feds ship 500 children to Pennsylvania

    HARRISBURG — An influx of unaccompanied children crossing the southern U.S. border is spilling into Pennsylvania, as state officials received word Monday that more than 500 are being housed in the commonwealth.

    July 22, 2014

  • Hope Lewis Inmate's widow wants $750,000 from Northumberland County

    SUNBURY — The widow of a Shamokin man who hanged himself inside Northumberland County Prison is demanding $750,000, the firing of all jail employees who worked the night of June 16 and a complete overhaul of policies and procedures for suicidal inmates.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Vancliff Lifer gets more time for molesting Danville girls

    WILKES-BARRE — A convicted murderer accused of having persuaded a former Danville woman to bring two girls to visit him in a northeastern Pennsylvania prison so he could molest them has been sentenced to additional prison time and fined.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Union County driver, 86, dies near Weikert

    WEIKERT — An 86-year-old Weikert man died in a one-car accident Tuesday morning, when he lost control of his vehicle on Weikert Road in front of the Union County Sportsman’s Club, veered off the road and slammed into a tree.

    July 22, 2014

  • Director hired for Anthracite Outdoor Adventure Area

    BURNSIDE — An Anthracite Outdoor Adventure Area committee member with experience in the ATV industry was named the operations director of the park during Monday night’s authority meeting.

    July 22, 2014

The Daily Marquee

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.