We audited the Housing Choice Voucher and public housing programs at the West Warwick Housing Authority as a result of concerns from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and a hotline complaint. The audit objectives were to determine whether (1) procurements were executed in accordance with Federal regulations, (2) West Warwick officials established adequate controls over the Housing Choice Voucher and public housing programs to ensure compliance with HUD regulations, and (3) purchases and inventory were reasonable and adequately supported.
West Warwick’s procurements did not comply with Federal requirements. Thirteen procurements totaling more than $2 million had deficiencies, including no independent cost estimates, no contracts, no record of bids or requests for proposals, no price evaluations, no completion certifications, and only one notice to proceed. West Warwick’s Housing Choice Voucher and public housing programs did not operate in compliance with HUD requirements due to a lack of policies and procedures and inadequately trained staff. In addition, its credit card charges and petty cash purchases were not supported, and its assets were not protected.
We recommend that the Director of Public Housing require West Warwick to (1) provide support for procurements totaling more than $2 million or repay HUD from non-Federal funds, (2) develop and implement controls over its procurement process, (3) develop and implement policies and procedures for the Housing Choice Voucher and public housing programs, (4) provide support for $18,501 in credit card charges or repay HUD from non-Federal funds, (5) provide support for $4,530 in petty cash purchases or repay HUD from non-Federal funds, and (6) develop and maintain property records and conduct an inventory in accordance with Federal regulations.