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Homeless service provider allegedly spent $1.4 million on alcohol, fast food excursions

The Bowery Resident Commission, a nonprofit for the homeless in New York City, has spent more than $1 million on things like movie tickets and fast food, the state watchdog’s office said. and wine.

An inspection conducted by the New York Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s office found that the BRC charged the city at least $2,653 for a $36,510 ride that the organization claimed was the cost of “training” and recruiting staff”, The New York Post report. The organization declined to disclose to auditors whether the remainder of the price was charged to the city.

BRC’s website states its mission is to help “restore hope and dignity” to people experiencing homelessness by “providing opportunities for health and self-sufficiency.”

The Post said that as of 2019, the BRC had $527 million in homeless service contracts, including a contract to operate the Jack Ryan Residence homeless shelter in Manhattan.

The 200-bed shelter is supposed to house single men in need of mental health services, by Directory of Homeless Shelters.

The inspection found that in addition to yacht costs attributed to the Jack Ryan Residence contract, the nonprofit had claimed $1,500 at Wendy’s and $3,482 at AMC Theater without providing sufficient funding. materials and invoices to cover costs.

It also shows that hundreds of thousands of dollars in rent and utility costs were wrongly attributed to the Jack Ryan Residence contract and not to other BRC programs. Post said to be located in the same building.

The executive’s office said the BRC charged the city $1.4 million in unsupported or authorized costs, considering some of the costs “employee appreciation.”

In a statement, DiNapoli said the charges were worrisome.

“It is cause for concern that the nonprofit hired to tackle the growing homeless crisis has so many red flags about the costs it has to pay for its members,” said DiNapoli. street,” said DiNapoli. “Charging taxpayers for an alcohol excursion is not the most appropriate.”

One October New York Post report revealed that over the past eight years, controversial organizations like the BRC have received about $4.6 billion in city taxes aimed at combating the homelessness crisis. This represents about 29% of the city’s $15.8 billion in Homeless Services contracts.

The United States Interagency Council on Homelessness reported As of January 2020, New York has an estimated homeless population of 91,271, outstripping most other states. Only California has a higher estimate of more than 161,000.

Of the 91,271, more than 15,000 are households, more than 3,000 are unaccompanied youth ages 18 to 24, and more than 1,200 are veterans.

New York, subway, homeless people
An audit by the New York auditor’s office found that a homeless nonprofit used city money for alcohol excursions, movie tickets and fast food. Pictured above, a homeless man sleeps on the F subway on October 12 in Brooklyn, New York.
Photo by Andrew Lichtenstein / Corbis via Getty Images

https://www.newsweek.com/new-york-homeless-services-provider-accused-misspending-1-4-million-dollars-1664780 Homeless service provider allegedly spent $1.4 million on alcohol, fast food excursions

Brian Ashcraft

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