Those sexy stimulus-funded weatherization projects in Cook County are found to be riddled with waste and fraud. Luckily, no one has been killed from improperly vented furnaces or other safety lapses.
What a horror story:
The findings are grim. "Our testing revealed substandard performance in weatherization workmanship, initial assessments, and contractor billing," the inspector general report says. "These problems were of such significance that they put the integrity of the entire program at risk."Sure, the program is a complete disaster; but dishonest, incompetent contractors need work, too.
The work was not just wasteful; it was dangerous. Department inspectors found "heat barriers around chimneys that had not been installed, causing fire hazards." They found "a furnace [that] had not been vented properly." The found "a shut-off valve that had not been installed on a gas stove." And they found "carbon monoxide detectors, smoke alarms and fire extinguishers had not been installed as planned."Your tax dollars at work. Appalling but not surprising. Read the rest.
And then there was fraud. At ten of the 15 homes visited, Department inspectors found examples in which "a contractor had installed a 125,000 BTU boiler, but had billed CEDA for a 200,000 BTU boiler costing an estimated $1,000. more."
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