$700M in Katrina, Rita Aid May Have Been Squandered
24K families given up to $30K each
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Apr 4, 2013 7:12 AM CDT
Updated Apr 4, 2013 7:54 AM CDT
In this Sept. 2, 2005 file photo, homes are surrounded by floodwaters from Hurricane Katrina.   (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, Pool, File)

(Newser) – Officials lack "conclusive evidence" that up to $700 million in federal aid following hurricanes Katrina and Rita was used appropriately, a federal investigation finds. Some of the 24,000 families who received up to $30,000 apiece to elevate their homes used the money for another purpose, while others failed to provide a full report of what they'd done with the cash, says the report, by HUD's inspector general.

HUD officials say Louisiana was responsible for overseeing the appropriate use of the money, the AP reports. Since Katrina, the department has helped put stricter rules on aid distribution for events like Hurricane Sandy, a rep says. Indeed, "as the federal government prepares to spend nearly $16 billion on recovery efforts related to Sandy, this is a mistake taxpayers, and citizens affected by the storm, can't afford to see repeated," says Sen. Tom Coburn. Louisiana is still pushing aid recipients to document their use of the money, and some 5,000 homeowners have complied following the report's assessment.

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Apr 8, 2013 2:59 AM CDT
Lagniappe? Crooks in Lousiana...no way. Obama taking care of business as usual.
Apr 7, 2013 9:33 AM CDT
Most of these people didn't live in homes worth $30.000 to begin with because government refused to hand out fancy homes along with the other 10.000 benefits they were entitled to. So no point using the $30.000 on elevating homes instead of necessities like fancy vacations, gucci bags, Escalades. And once the money runs out (in no time) you can always count on the taxpay.... I mean the "government" to continue to bail your lazy behind out. But it's ok they are entitled because they were forced to be governed by plantation democrats for 60 yrs straight. (No fan of repubs either, but at least they'd force them to work more instead of putting their hands in my pocket)
Apr 5, 2013 1:03 PM CDT
Just give booze & ciggies to teenagers and let them run the govt. It may work out better.