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The U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development fails to use common-sense oversight.

In "Million-Dollar Wasteland," The Washington Post's Debbie Cenziper reports that the federal government's largest housing construction program for the poor has squandered hundreds of millions of dollars on stalled or abandoned  projects and routinely failed to crack down on derelict developers or the local housing agencies that funded them. Nationwide, nearly 700 projects awarded $400 million have been idling for years -- some for a decade or longer. One delayed project involved three real-estate speculators, once convicted in the largest HUD scandal in D.C. history, who sold rotting apartment complexes to a HUD-funded nonprofit using an inflated appraisal written by one of the sellers' associates. The nonprofit went bankrupt before any work was done; the District lost millions.

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