St. Louis Public Radio News
5:24 pm
Tue June 23, 2009

Zweifel proposes MHDC reforms

Jefferson City, MO – State Treasurer Clint Zweifel is calling for reforms to the Missouri Housing Development Commission after taking over chairmanship of the agency.

Zweifel's proposals include barring commissioners and staff from having personal financial relationships with anyone receiving benefits from the commission.

Former commissioners and staffers would also have to wait for a period of time before they could work for a company receiving benefits from the Housing Development Commission.

"Once we have done these things, we can move on to our other goals and our mission of this organization...that means quality of affordable housing that's accountable to taxpayers...that means emphasis on affordable and responsible home ownership," Zweifel said.

Persons or companies applying for MHDC benefits would be required to disclose all their business relationships to the commission.

"It's my hope and my belief that we should have no one on this commission that is doing business with people that are coming before MHDC...so in that case, I think it just creates an unseemly environment, and is really just inappropriate when you're using taxpayer dollars," Zweifel said.

The commission's Executive Director, Pete Ramsel, recently admitted that he was interviewed by the FBI as part of an investigation into low-income housing projects.

Also, the results of a state audit of the Housing Development Commission are set to be released Wednesday.