The Rental Housing Integrity Improvement Project (RHIIP) is a priority Secretarial initiative designed to reduce income and rent errors and improper payments in the administration of both public housing and Section 8 programs.
RHIIP is a comprehensive strategy to correct program errors in HUD's high-risk rental housing subsidy programs and related management control deficiencies. HUD's objective is to ensure that the correct amount of assistance goes to the people who need it.
The Improper Payments Information Act of 2002(Pub. L. No. 107-300) requires Federal agencies to assess every federal program and dollar for improper payment risk, measure the accuracy of payments annually, and initiate program improvements to ensure payment errors are reduced. On November 20, 2009, President Obama issued Executive Order 13520-Reducing Improper Payments aimed at further intensifying efforts to eliminate payment error, waste, fraud, and abuse in the major programs administered by the federal government, while continuing to ensure that the right people receive the right payment for the right reason at the right time. As required by the President's Executive Order, HUD reports the following information on the new Payment Accuracy website:
- Current and historical rates and amounts of improper payments
- Why improper payments occur
- What HUD is doing to reduce and recover improper payments
Of the 78 risk-susceptible programs in 2009, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) designated 14 programs as "high-error". HUD's rental housing assistance programs are designated as a high-error program based on improper payment information in HUD's annual performance and financial reports. The 2010 high-error programs are those programs that reported roughly $750 million or more in improper payments in 2009, which did not report an error amount in the current reporting year but previously reported an error amount over the threshold, or which have not yet established a program error rate and have measured components that were above the threshold.
The 2001 Policy Development and Research (PD&R) Quality Control for Rental Assistance Subsidies Determinations study (QC study), found that 60 percent of all rent and subsidy calculations contained some type of error. The most common sources of errors are:
- Calculation errors
- Failure to verify income/expenses
- Failure to use UIV tools & techniques
- Incorrect income and deduction amounts (i.e., earned income, pension income, and medical allowances)
Onsite tenant interviews, file review, and independent third-party income verifications were conducted by an independent contractor for a nationally representative sample of families who received public housing and Section 8 HCV assistance.
Successive QC studies
HUD continues to conduct successive QC studies to establish estimates of error, provide periodic performance indicators, and verify the effectiveness of HUD's corrective actions. Read the results of the FY 2009 QC study.
Preliminary results from the first of these follow-up studies were reported in the December 19, 2003 Inspector General's Audit Report under Note 17 (Adobe PDF). They showed that HUD had exceeded its error reduction goals for FY 2003.