Housing Dept. near 30% mistake rate during pandemic

By Taxpayers Association of Oregon Foundation,

An audit indicates the Oregon Housing and Community Services Department erred nearly 30 percent of the time while distributing $426 million in emergency rental assistance during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Oregon Secretary of State’s Office audit of 61 payments indicates the agency’s staff, in 17 of those cases, failed to make sure that the landlords and renters who received money were in fact eligible for it. In 2022 alone, the flaws may have cost the state $11 million in over-payments as staff failed to track the money given away. The program likely prevented eviction of people who didn’t have money for rent during the pandemic, but auditors concluded the errors and mistakes made indicate the agency was unprepared to handle a similar crisis.