HUD Identifies Discrepancies

By: Stan Torgerson
By: Stan Torgerson

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Roughly 300 families receiving rental assistance in central Mississippi have discrepancies in income reported to the Housing Authority and what is shown by Social Security and other income records.

The Meridian Housing Authority has been ordered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to purge the rolls of tenants who may be "under-declaring" their income.

MHA executive director Derwin Jackson said the reason tenants do this is to increase their federal housing subsidy.

"Any income going to that household when they're applying for subsidized housing, has to be reported," said Derwin Jackson, executive director of Meridian Housing Authority. "That money plays into part how much rent they're going to pay, how much subsidy goes to that unit with them. "

If fraud is detected, the tenant must pay the proper amount retroactively or move out of public housing. The deadline for the purge is Aug. 15, 2005.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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