Holding calls for Raleigh Housing Authority Board audit
Posted January 6, 2014
Raleigh, N.C. — Congressman George Holding is calling for the federal government to audit the Raleigh Housing Authority following questions about how much the agency's director, Steve Beam, is paid and how much time he takes off.
Beam earns a base salary of $240,000 as head of an agency that manages 2,000 public housing units and oversees another 3,500 in rental assistance vouchers, virtually all of which is funded by the federal government.
A recent report by the News & Observer raised questions about the fact that Beam has taken at least 20 compensatory days a year for the past four years.
In an interview with WRAL last week, Beam confirmed he took the comp days but said the majority of them were in exchange for weekend days worked. In particular, he said his work related to state and national housing authority organizations frequently required weekend travel and meetings. He has worked for the authority for nearly 28 years.
"I work far more days than I'm paid to work during the year," Beam said.
The Raleigh Housing Authority Board met Monday a closed-door executive session to discuss the situation. Board members did not announce whether they had taken any action, although they said afterward they expect to issue a statement later this month.
Raleigh's mayor appoints the authority, but it does not report to the city government. However, council members say they expect to discuss the matter, including the city's appointments to the board, sometime this month.
Holding, a Raleigh Republican, took issue both with Beam's time away from the job as well as his salary.
"It certainly runs up a red flag when the RHA pays its executive director more than the director of the Chicago Housing Authority or the Governor of North Carolina," the congressman said.
He added that an audit by the Department of Housing and Urban Development would "show the public how the RHA spent federal money, how much money it wasted, and what steps should be taken to eliminate further wasteful spending while continuing to fulfill its mission."