Federal Disaster Audit Recommends Texas Repay $9M

March 13, 2012

A federal audit has recommended that Texas repay $9 million in alleged overcharges related to administration of hurricane recovery funds.

Hurricanes Dolly and Ike hit Texas in 2008. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has made $1.4 billion in grants available.

Gary Hagood with the Texas General Land Office says the state is negotiating with federal authorities over potential repayment.

The Austin American-Statesman reported Sunday that the review determined the state improperly contracted with engineering firm HNTB to manage the grants. The newspaper reports overcharges were billed by Missouri-based HNTB and paid in federal dollars.

HNTB, in a statement Friday, said the company cooperated with the audit, has complied with terms of its state contract and that concerns identified in the review have been addressed.

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