Access to Housing and Urban Development information was delayed or denied during an investigation into the delayed relief to the US territory for the devastation left by 2017 Hurricane Maria the report found, according to the Post.
Former HUD Secretary Ben Carson and another former department officials declined to be interviewed by investigators during the investigation and former senior Office of Management and Budget officials also declined to give information about decisions related to Puerto Rico’s aid, the newspaper also reported.
“Delays and denials of access and refusals to cooperate negatively affected the ability of the [Office of Inspector General] to conduct this review,” the report says, according to The Post.
Investigators interviewed 20 current and former Housing department officials along with two two Puerto Rico housing officials, but several senior political appointees at HUD “withheld answers to questions, and White House budget office officials involved in delaying the timing of the aid also refused to cooperate” according to the Post.
CNN has reached out to HUD and Carson for comment Thursday.
The inspector general’s report also mentioned a never before required review process for distributing disaster funds by OMB prevented HUD from publishing a draft notice of funding by its target date, the newspaper reported. The report also said there was no previous talks on the extra step’s requirement.
Source: CNNPolitics – Breaking News