Federal Aid Slow to Get to Homeowners

Three years after launch of foreclosure assistance program, only 22 percent of money has been distributed


A $7.6 billion federal program to help homeowners avoid foreclosure in 18 states and the District of Columbia has gotten just 22% of its funds to homeowners more than three years after its launch, a government report out Tuesday says.

The report criticizes the Treasury Department, which oversees the Hardest Hit fund, for failing to set measurable goals for the program and for letting states reduce their projections. That shifting baseline makes it hard to track performance, the report says.

After being announced near the height of the foreclosure crisis, estimates were that the program would help almost 550,000 people. Those are now closer to 370,000, says the report from the Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program.