Collier County should pay contractors and stop misrepresenting contractors on the housing business. The incompetence of the Collier County Housing Department and Purchasing Department is staggering. But the problem is greater when the County County Commission and the Collier County Clerk of Court can’t coordinate the payment of contractors. The bottleneck occurs here because of the statutory requirement of the Clerk of Court that allows him to investigate claims of fraud and subsequently delay or stop payments to contractors – forever. The Commission then claims there’s taxpayer fraud by contractors, which is a polite way of making an unsubstantiated claim.
Matters can get worse, for instance, when the Clerk of Courts decides to sue Collier County on a money issue.
If the Sheriff had to get involved in investigating a false claim, he would end up determining a frivolous investigation and a waste of taxpayer money. Then, the false claim comes back to the government, where it sits – forever. Contractors just don’t get paid (period).
Where lie the contractors? All are following procedures given by the Housing and Purchasing Departments. Contractors are quickly learning that the County is not a good client for business, but some businesses are winners who do get paid, and others are losers who don’t get paid. Who decides that? – Lobbyists (of the Collier County type)?
Meanwhile, the government management of federal and state funded Housing programs is abused. Lawsuits fly, courts are involved, and procedural payments to contractors are stopped.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds the Disaster Recovery Initiative (DRI) and State Housing Initiative Program (SHIP), the programs installed for housing recovery. The government management of these funds are in claim of fraud, waste and abuse. It isn’t the contractors; it’s the Collier County Government. The solution is to pay the contractors, and return the granted state and federal money back to where it came – the Monopoly Game bank of the Federal Reserve.