Housing Authority facing $11.4m in penalties

The Lowell Housing Authority could be required to pay back $11.4 million to the federal government if it is not able to adequately address issues highlighted in a recent audit by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of the Inspector General. Specifically, HUD auditors are recommending a detailed analysis of 14 construction projects that used federal capital funds and stimulus money between October 2008 and September 2012, as well as procurement costs during that time period for which more favorable prices or better-quality items may have been available. Gary Wallace, the authority’s executive director, has established an audit response team that will meet twice monthly to address the issues raised in the report.