Here is a collection of updates on the crazy world of ACORN. As these stories continue to unravel it is very obvious that this organization has no business being involved with anything involving government funds. The last story in the series is ACORN’s weak attempt at blame deflection. If they were a legitimate organization with a few bad apples they would circle the wagons and do an internal house cleaning to repair their reputation. However, the charges of wrong doing keep popping up and they continue to play the victim card. At least the Census Bureau has finally woke up.
From Fox News
After Census Severs Ties, ACORN May Face Scrutiny of Housing Grants
ACORN Housing Corporation received $1.6 million in federal money to provide housing services to low-income communities in this fiscal year
The Census Bureau notified ACORN on Friday in a letter that it is severing all ties with the group for all work having to do with the 2010 census.
“Over the last several months, through ongoing communication with our regional offices, it is clear that ACORN’s affiliation with the 2010 Census promotion has caused sufficient concern in the general public, has indeed become a distraction from our mission, and may even become a discouragement to public cooperation, negatively impacting 2010 Census efforts,” read a letter from Census Director Robert M. Groves to the president of ACORN.
“Unfortunately, we no longer have confidence that our national partnership agreement is being effectively managed through your many local offices. For the reasons stated, we therefore have decided to terminate the partnership,” the letter said.
Conservatives have cheered the Census Bureau’s decision to sever ties with ACORN because it had lost confidence in the group, but the hidden-camera videos that prompted ACORN to fire four workers this week could raise more questions about the federal funding ACORN receives for housing outreach.
ACORN Housing Corporation received $1.6 million to provide housing services to low-income communities in this fiscal year, ending Sept. 30, according to USASpending.gov, a federal government Web site for tracking government grants.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development Grants has given $8.2 million to ACORN in the years between 2003 and 2006, as well as $1.6million to ACORN affiliates.
HUD could not be reached for comment.
In a related story from The Brooklyn Eagle: ACORN as your Landlord
The Atlantic Avenue Apartments is a seven-story elevator building providing 150 units of housing. At least a dozen of those units will be reserved for adults with developmental disabilities. The creation of affordable housing in neighborhoods across New York City is part of the City’s Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan to create jobs for New Yorkers and implement a vision for long-term economic growth.
Atlantic Avenue Apartments was developed on vacant land, with a portion formerly owned by the City of New York and a portion owned by the developers. Dunn Development Corp. and New York ACORN Housing Company, Inc. have joined to co-sponsor the project, and ACORN will also serve as the property manager.
From the Miami Herald Sep. 9, 2009
ACORN Voter Registration Fraud in Miami
Eleven people hired to register potential voters in Miami-Dade County before last year’s presidential election were being sought Wednesday for falsifying hundreds of voter registration cards.
The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office issued arrest warrants for each of the 11 suspects, all of whom worked for the local chapter of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, (ACORN).
By early Wednesday morning, six were in custody, authorities said.
ACORN came under fire during last year’s presidential campaign when Republicans and other conservative groups accused the national organization of committing fraud in its aggressive voter registration efforts in various cities and counties nationwide, including Florida.
But ACORN officials said they had alerted authorities about the alleged illegal activity among some canvassers in Miami-Dade after finding “numerous discrepancies” on voter cards collected from the Homestead area.
The arrests are “further evidence we’ve been policing our own folks and report people attempting to commit voter registration fraud,” said ACORN spokesman Brian Kettenring. “This was really some individuals who were trying to defraud their employer.”
An Unbelievable Response from ACORN
Statement from Bertha Lewis, Chief Organizer, ACORN Regarding Recent News Reports
September 12, 2009
The relentless attacks on ACORN’s members, its staff and the policies and positions we promote are unprecedented. An international entertainment conglomerate, disguising itself as a “news” agency (Fox), has expended millions, if not tens of millions of dollars, in their attempt to destroy the largest community organization of Black, Latino, poor and working class people in the country. It is not coincidence that the most recent attacks have been launched just when health care reform is gaining traction. It is clear they’ve had these tapes for months.
We are their Willy Horton for 2009. We are the boogeyman for the right-wing and its echo chambers. If ACORN did not exist, the right-wing would have needed to create us in order to achieve their agenda, their missions, their ideal, retrograde America. This recent scam, which was attempted in San Diego, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia to name a few places, had failed for months before the results we’ve all recently seen. I am appalled and angry; I cannot and I will not defend the actions of the workers depicted in the video, who have since been terminated. But it is clear that the videos are doctored, edited, and in no way the result of the fabricated story being portrayed by conservative activist “filmmaker” O’Keefe and his partner in crime. And, in fact, a crime it was – our lawyers believe a felony – and we will be taking legal action against Fox and their co-conspirators.
We will not be intimidated by this international conglomerate, which has made as its mission the destruction of our organization. ACORN members are committed to the empowerment of their communities – Black, Latino, poor, and working class – at the deepest level. We are an organization committed to halting the foreclosure crisis and keeping people in their homes. We are an organization committed to ensuring quality, affordable health care for every American. We are an organization that will not be stopped in our commitment to our members and our communities which has included:
Helping hundreds of thousands of African-American and Latino voters register to vote and get to the polls in recent years;
Preparing, since 2004, approximately 150,000 free tax returns totaling $190 million in refunds and increased earned income tax credit participation;
Providing effective foreclosure prevention advocacy saving thousands of American families from losing their homes to foreclosure.