Piedmont Community Action under investigation - FOX Carolina 21

Nonprofit agency that helps low-income families under investigation

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The Inspector General and the Governor's Office of Economic Opportunity meets with PCA board members. (Aug. 6, 2014/FOX Carolina) The Inspector General and the Governor's Office of Economic Opportunity meets with PCA board members. (Aug. 6, 2014/FOX Carolina)
SPARTANBURG, SC (FOX Carolina) -

A nonprofit agency that helps low-income families in Spartanburg and Cherokee counties is under investigation.

A preliminary report shows Piedmont Community Action, or PCA, could owe the state millions of dollars. The Inspector General and the Governor's Office of Economic Opportunity met with the PCA board members to go over the report.

The investigation focused on the PCA's weatherization program, which helps reduce energy costs for low-income housing by increasing energy efficiency in homes.

The Inspector General's Office found a lot of materials that were missing, homes that were in poor shape, and there was money that couldn't be accounted for.

The investigation focused on 67 homes in Spartanburg and Cherokee counties, which represent roughly 10 percent of PCA's weatherization project.

"The accounting records were a mess. There was no way - we just, we couldn't audit. On top of that, when Paul went to do visual inspection again - I'd say out of the 67 homes, the vast majority of the work was not done well," said James Miller, director of the South Carolina Office of Economic Opportunity.

But the chief executive officer of PCA said that was not the case.

"To say all 67 were done and people were displeased, I have a fold in that - it doesn't represent 60 or 100 homes," said Dr. Willie Ross. "We have a folder of letters sent into to us, thanking us for our service."

The investigation looked at records between 2009 and 2013.

The state has given PCA up to 15 days to come up with an action plan to rectify the issues listed in the preliminary report.

If PCA fails to show a paper trail of receipts and files, they could be on the hook for up to $3 million.

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