4/14/11, "Obama's $5 Billion Weatherizing Program Wastes Stimulus Funds, Auditors Find," Fox News, Stephen Clark
"President Obama's $5 billion stimulus injection into a decades-old program to help lower energy bills for millions of low-income families by retrofitting their homes to improve efficiency has been plagued by cases of mismanagement, waste and fraud in several states.
The most dramatic example can be found in Delaware, where "gross mismanagement and potential fraudulent activity" that federal auditors found last year could affect hundreds of homes, a senior administration official told FoxNews.com. The subsequent repairs and inspections reportedly
- will cost the state a significant chunk of the $7.5 million remaining from $13.7 million of stimulus it received in 2009.
- New Jersey,
- Tennessee and
"It's a complete cesspool of waste," Leslie Paige, vice president of Citizens Against Government Waste, told FoxNews.com. "When it's over, we will never know how much went down the tube. They cannot track the money. By the time they get to it,
- a lot of the money will be gone."...
The program works like this: Washington sends weatherization money to the states, where it is passed to local nonprofits that hire contractors to spread insulation and install efficient heaters in people's homes.The $5 billion program was portrayed as the heart of the stimulus package -- a way to jumpstart the economy while encouraging people to conserve energy at home....
CAGW's Paige said the failure of the program is "a poster child for
- this entire stimulus program."
"This was not about really helping the economy because if you wanted to support the economy, you would have done more with tax breaks," she said. "Instead they have to jam this money
- through their political agenda.
"Anytime you take a lot of money, like $5 billion, and you have to spend it as quickly as possible, that should always be raising alarm bells because
there's no prudence going on.""...