Botched Dallas Housing Program Could Cost Taxpayers $1.3 Million

The city of Dallas should repay more than $1 million in federal money after it botched a program to replace dilapidated houses with new ones for low-income homeowners, federal auditors say in a new report. The report echoes many of the findings first reported in a Dallas Morning News investigation in March.The News found that the city gave more than $800,000 to an unqualified contractor who was a longtime associate of a local housing official, resulting in shoddy houses for the families the program was supposed to help.The city put the housing official, Carl Wagner, on paid leave after The News' investigation.The federal report, released this week, looked at 13 dilapidated houses that were demolished and rebuilt to help older and disabled homeowners. Federal auditors faulted Dallas for general mismanagement but were particularly critical of how the city awarded and enforced contracts with the builder featured in the The News' investigation: Dry Quick Restoration.The city declined to answer detailed questions Thursday. The owner of Dry Quick declined to comment.  Continue reading...

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