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HUD Archives: News Releases

12:30 p.m. Thursday
April 3, 1997

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WASHINGTON -- Intensifying its crackdown on bad landlords, the Department of Housing and Urban Development today permanently barred 13 landlords in five cities from doing new business with HUD, Secretary Andrew Cuomo said.

Cuomo said HUD also took action to bar the landlords from receiving new contracts from other federal agencies for three to five years.

"We will not allow bad landlords to use HUD programs like personal ATM machines, costing taxpayers millions of dollars," Cuomo said. "Uncle Sam is taking the ATMs out of service."

"The actions we are taking today can cost bad landlords dearly," Cuomo said. "Business people can suffer serious financial damage by being barred from doing new business with the federal government."

The landlords owned property in Auburn, AL; Balcones Heights, TX; San Antonio, TX; Richmond, VA; and Tucson, AZ.

Cuomo said the landlords received HUD mortgage insurance in exchange for providing safe and decent housing for the poor. He said the landlords then improperly pocketed $6.7 million in rents that should have been used to make mortgage payments, causing their properties to go into default and be taken over by HUD.

HUD acquired the properties in the five cities, paid $23.1 million in insurance claims to lenders holding the mortgages, and then sold the properties for $11.4 million -- $11.7 million less than the cost of the insurance claims. HUD worked with the Justice Department to obtain $4.7 million in judgments against some of the former landlords.

Today's action was part of a nationwide crackdown called "Get Tough Against Bad Landlords" that was announced last week by Cuomo and Attorney General Janet Reno. Enforcement actions were then announced against landlords in Chicago; LaFource Parish, LA; Dallas; Indianapolis and New York City.

The 13 debarment actions announced today were the first of dozens HUD expects in the coming months. In all of 1996, HUD sought debarments against 22 individuals.

Cuomo identified the 13 landlords as:

  • Phillip E. Dutton, Grover C. Fleming, Robert D. Word and Michael J. Vickers, who owned Hudson Arms Apartments in Auburn, AL. A HUD audit found the landlords had improperly pocketed $130,000. After the U.S. Attorney filed a civil complaint against the landlords, a judge ordered them to pay a penalty of $260,000 in 1995. HUD foreclosed on the apartment project, paid the lender holding the mortgage $4.2 million in insurance claims and sold the project for $2.1 million.

  • Ronald L. Temple and Carol L. Temple, who owned Henrico Country Club Apartments in Richmond, VA. A HUD investigation determined that the landlords diverted more than $1 million in rents and other income while not paying their HUD-insured mortgage. The U.S. Attorney filed a civil action and obtained a $4.4 million consent judgment against the owners in 1995. The title to the apartment project was transferred to HUD, HUD paid the mortgage holder $2.7 million in insurance claims and then sold the apartments for $2.1 million.

  • James W. Anthony, who owned: Alta Villa Apartments in Balcones Heights, TX; and Cambridge Apartments, Greenhouse Apartments, and Park Town Apartments in San Antonio, TX. An audit found the landlord had collected $550,000 in excess funds. HUD foreclosed on the properties, paid the mortgage holder $10.3 million in insurance claims and sold the properties in 1994 and 1995 for $2.9 million.

  • Donald DalBianco, Robin Williamson, Michael Florence, Anthony Swartz, Norman Winston and Teresa Warren, who owned Park Villa Convalescent Center in Tucson, AZ. A HUD audit found that the owners made or allowed $4.85 million in payments that violated HUD program requirements and made another $212,000 in payments not supported by accounting records. HUD took over the property, paid the mortgage holder $5.9 million in insurance claims and sold the property in 1993 for $4.3 million.

In addition to permanently barring all the landlords from dealings with HUD, the Department took action to debar Anthony for three years and the other landlords for five years from contracts with other federal agencies.

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