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BMHA owes taxpayers $4.2 million

Posted at 6:55 PM, Apr 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-06 18:55:57-04

An investigation by the City of Buffalo's comptroller has now found that the Buffalo Municipal Housing Authority (BMHA) owes the City $4.2 million dollars for unpaid bills.

According to Comptroller Mark Schroeder, the unpaid bills stretch back to 2005 and include:

$1.9 million for natural gas

$1.7 million for water / sewer

$433,334 for police services

$159,502 for administrative services.

"It appears to me that this is getting a little bit out of control," said Schroeder.

More alarming, said the comptroller, his office discovered that the BMHA took it upon itself to waive its responsibility for paying $3.5 million of the unpaid bills.

"They have no authority to do that - ever," added Schroeder.

"There needs to be some management here.  And I really do believe that the mayor and the common council need to look at this.  We've done all we can do and now it is up to them to act,"  continued Schroeder.

7 Eyewitness News reached out to BMHA chairman Michael Seaman for comment, but he was not available.

However, Lovejoy District Council Member Richard Fontana said the council is looking deep into the issue and is exploring options to prevent this from happening again in the future.