Councilmembers Call For Housing Investigation

Brown, Graham cite Department of Housing for "brazen abuse of authority"

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Washington City Paper

    Two D.C. Councilmembers have called for an investigation into the city's Department of Housing and Community Development.

    At-large member Michael A. Brown and Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham are asking both the D.C. Inspector General and D.C. Attorney General to look into what they allege is "unethical behavior,"  and "possible criminal malfeasance and collusion."

    Both councilmembers claim that they have uncovered evidence of housing department employees "enriching" themselves through the sale and renovation of city properties by favored contractors.

    In a statement released this weekend, Brown specifically questioned why the anti-gang violence group Peaceoholics was awarded $4.4 million by the Department of Housing to acquire and rehabilitate several properties in the District, despite having "little or no housing experience."

    "[P]roperty records show that certain individuals and entities have repeated[ly] appeared in several questionable sales, purchases and land transfers," Brown's statement said.

    Peaceoholics, a non-profit founded by former D.C. City Council candidate Ron Moten, lost funding in 2010. The group had previously been cited for failing to comply with reporting requirements related to $13.7 million in grants and contracts that had been awarded over the previous six years.