The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development said it wants $7.9 million back from the city and a Central Oahu nonprofit unless they can prove the program is in compliance with rules on how the money is spent.
Recent monitoring of the Wahiawa-based ORI Anuenue Hale programs by HUD called into question whether the money is being used properly to aid the elderly and those with severe disabilities. HUD also believes a wellness center was being underutilized.
"What they’ve told us is that the city and ORI need to repay the total $7.9 million unless the city takes immediate corrective action within the next 30 days," city Managing Director Douglas Chin said last night.
Chin said the city immediately suspended further payment and began discussions with ORI.
The city first entered an agreement with the city to provide services in 2001, Chin said.
ORI has refused to disclose some of its records to HUD citing the privacy of its clients, he said.
The city is "hoping it’s a bookkeeping matter" but is itself looking into the matter further, Chin said.