This is the latest on a post I wrote a little over a month ago about a federal contractor (Endeavors) that landed a massive no-bid contract and now the Dept. of Homeland Security Inspector General has launched an investigation.
The size of the contract and the connection to a Biden insider raises red flags.
DHS Inspector General reviewing huge no-bid contract with company connected to former Biden official
EXCLUSIVE: The Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General’s office is evaluating a multi-million dollar contract awarded to a Texas company that employs a former Biden transition official, multiple sources with the probe confirm to Fox News.
A DHS IG official tells Fox News the contract, with the San Antonio-based nonprofit Endeavors, is the subject of an ongoing evaluation to look at how “ICE plans to house migrant families in hotels, and how ICE selected a contractor to implement these plans.” The Formal title of the probe is, “ICE’s Contract to House Migrants in Hotels.”
Tens of thousands of migrants are crossing the southern border every month, with nearly 180,000 encountered by Customs and Border Patrol along the Southwestern Border in April 2021.
Thousands of those migrants are now being housed in hotels, thanks to Endeavors. The company recently landed a couple of massive government contracts worth upwards of a half-billion dollars.
On January 20th, 2021, the very day President Joe Biden took the oath of office, Endeavors put out a news release announcing the hiring of Andrew Lorenzen-Strait, a former Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) official who also served as a Biden transition advisor on Homeland Security issues.
“This is a no-bid contract, and those should be used in only the most extraordinary circumstances,” said Tom Jones of the American Accountability Foundation, a conservative-leaning watchdog organization. “It’s typical and it’s terrible. Both sides do it. It’s why we have a massive budget deficit and a debt going through the roof…There’s scumminess and swampiness on both sides of this but we need to root that out.”
But, at least in some states Republican governors are saying NO!
“I do not want our kids harmed as the result of President Biden’s bad policies.”
(Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts)
One Republican Governor who apparently doesn’t mind helping Biden out of the border crisis mess is never-Trumper and Jeb Bush pal Republican Governor Larry Hogan of Maryland.
Or, does he even know that an organization in our state, which received $55 million in the last 12 months from the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement specifically to care for the UAC kids, is using Maryland’s foster care system to place the mostly teenaged ‘children’ (who have so-far found no relative in America willing to take them) into Maryland homes?
Makes me wonder what Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS)is doing with $55 million (75% of their federal boodle) that is for the children if they are simply placing them in other taxpayer-funded foster care as this news at CBS suggests.
For months now, we’ve seen images of federal facilities packed with thousands of unaccompanied minors at a time when there are a record number of children reaching the southern border, most coming from Central America. The sheer volume of children is overwhelming the federal government’s resources with thousands of children packed into facilities never meant to handle this amount.
But one Baltimore based organization, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services, is working to move kids out of those facilities and into the homes of families eager to help.
“Our focus is getting these children out of Customs and Border Protection facilities,” said Krish O’Mara Vignarajah***, CEO of LIRS.
LIRS pairs kids with foster families across the country, including dozens here in Maryland.
But in the meantime, Vignarajah says the need is still great as the children continue to arrive at the southern border. “We have seen unprecedented numbers of children coming across the border and so we need more parents than ever before and so if anyone out there is willing to open up their home and hearts, these children could use their care,” she said.
(Just so you know, until a few short weeks about the ‘children’ illegally crossing our borders were referred to as Unaccompanied Alien Children, however a Biden administration edict now directs all media to refer to them as Unaccompanied Migrant Children, or simply Unaccompanied Children! Here Pew does what they are told!)
Republican Governors Block Unaccompanied Migrant Children
FORT WORTH, Texas — The federal foster care system was unprepared to house the record nearly 19,000 unaccompanied children who came to the United States in March, so the Biden administration asked some states to temporarily house them.
Republican governors in Iowa, Nebraska, South Carolina, South Dakota and Wyoming said no.
The governors claim that unaccompanied children would displace those already in state foster care or limit states’ ability to make new placements.
“Nebraska is declining their request because we are reserving our resources for serving our kids,” Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts said in an April 13 news release. “I do not want our kids harmed as the result of President Biden’s bad policies.”
Who is paying?
But federal officials note that care providers for unaccompanied children are paid via federal grants and operate separately from state child welfare systems.
Is LIRS paying the families directly out of their federal payola? If so, they need to explain it! And, explain who is monitoring the care the illegal alien kids are getting once placed in foster care homes.
Of course as Pew admits there are still costs to state taxpayers:
Caring for unaccompanied children does require some limited state resources, because states license and monitor foster care providers contracted by the Office of Refugee Resettlement, the federal agency in charge of housing unaccompanied minors.
However, there currently are no federally funded foster care providers for unaccompanied minors in any of the five states where Republican governors have expressed concerns, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services records analyzed by Stateline show.
Pew goes on and on consuming many column inches on the subject of bed space and how much, or how little, Trump left us with when the Dems stole the 2020 election.
Pew reports something we already knew (at least for LIRS and the USCCB).
Foster care providers who care for unaccompanied children include the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, BCFS Health and Human Services, Upbring, and Urban Strategies.
But, still unclear is how does this contract system work? And, why are middlemen even necessary? Couldn’t the feds just send money directly to state agencies willing to participate?
I wondered where Endeavorsis in all of this? That is another give-or-take $500 million for housing the ‘children.’
I guess we can conclude that our tax dollars (to care for the illegal alien kids) go through a bunch of contractor middlemen masquerading as non-profits (skimming off generous salaries and office overhead) as they go about looking for states willing to put unaccompanied alien children into their state’s foster care system thereby displacing needy American kids.
As I have been saying all along, federal refugee contractors put Americans Last!
Since LIRS is about 87% federally funded, they are a fake non-profit. LOL! You can be assured that this ‘religious’ federal contractor is not passing the plate on Sundays to pay for their ‘charitable’ work.
See this post I wrote a year ago at RRW about Krish and her hubby, the Washington DC Leftie power couple, working another angle—we must welcome more migrants of all stripes due to global warming!
And, somehow that is going to help America’s wildlife and our great outdoor spaces—say what?
Earlier this month news broke that a little-known nonprofit, Endeavers, was awarded one for the largest contracts ever to help house and manage the Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC)flooding the US border.
By the way, the Biden feds have dropped the word ‘Alien.’
The story interests me since I have spent a lot of time over the years pointing out the millions of taxpayer dollars flowing to nonprofit refugee resettlement contractors (with inside tracks into government pots of money) for the initial care of the new Americans the Democrats are moving to Anytown, USA.
And, of further interest to me is the fact that the main player in this story touts on his resume his time with Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service(LIRS) (one of nine federal refugee contractors I have been writing about for nearly 14 years).
Exclusive: Texas nonprofit got massive border contract after hiring Biden official
A Texas nonprofit that recently hired a Biden transition official got a contract worth as much as $530 million to help manage the influx of migrant children at the southern border, Axios has learned.
Why it matters: The contract is by far the largest ever awarded to Family Endeavors. It’s potentially worth more than 12 times the group’s most recently reported annual budget — a sign of the demand the new work will place on its operations.
~The no-bid contract also is the second largest ever awarded by the agency overseeing the migrant child program.
~The award comes as the Biden administration rushes to deal with an influx of migrants at the border, including more than 21,000 unaccompanied minors currently in government custody, according to the latest data.
Between the lines: Family Endeavors won the contract just months after it hired Andrew Lorenzen-Strait as its senior director for migrant services and federal affairs.
GOP lawmaker wants answers on massive border contract that went to nonprofit with ties to ex-Biden adviser
Republican Rep. Jim Banks is demanding answers from the head of the Administration for Children and Families after revelations that a nearly $530 million contract was awarded to a Texas nonprofit to help manage the influx of migrant children at the U.S. southern border — after the organization hired a former Biden transition official.
Axios first reported the contract, which is the largest ever awarded to the nonprofit, Family Endeavors, from the Department of Health and Human Services. The nonprofit also received a grant from the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement worth $87 million.
Family Endeavors, according to the report, recently hired former Biden transition official Andrew Lorenzen-Strait to serve as senior director for Migrant Services and Federal Affairs. While working on the Biden transition team, Lorenzen-Strait reportedly vetted political appointees for HHS and worked on the DHS policy team.
Banks, R-Ind., in a letter obtained by Fox News directed to the acting assistant secretary of the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) within HHS, JooYuen Chang, questioned the timing of the grants and whether they were related to Lorenzen-Strait’s work.
“The two unprecedented and massive grants Family Endeavors received were approved by HHS and DHS—the two agencies Lorenzen-Strait oversaw while a member of the Biden transition team,” Banks wrote. “And both grants were no-bid contracts, meaning they were awarded directly to Family Endeavors bypassing the normal competitive process.”
Banks went on to call the grant “especially concerning” due to Lorenzen-Strait’s responsibilities on the transition team, and said it was “probable” that he “played some role” in Chang’s appointment.
Banks went on to accuse Chang of having “played some role in awarding Lorenzen-Strait’s firm about a half a billion dollars.”
“Some may view this as a conflict of interest,” Banks wrote.
Visit USA Spendingfor the skinny on grants and contracts….
Just to give you an idea of the magnitude of this windfall for Endeavors, here is a screenshot from USA Spending of Endeavorsprevious federal funding and its huge payout (so far!) this year in the wake of Lorenzen-Straits arrival.
It almost makes you wonder if when Lorenzen-Strait came on board at Endeavors on January 25th, only a few days after the inauguration, that someone knew then that the rush on the border was about to be unleashed.
When I saw these mind-blowing numbers I had a good chuckle wondering why Lorenzen-Strait didn’t bring some of this payola to his pals at LIRS because LIRS is in the same business—getting the Unaccompanied Alien Children (aka New Americans) set up in America.
In 2018,Endeavors paid a top salary of around $300,000 in a year they raked in just over $40 million from American taxpayers. So, I can’t wait to see the salaries for this year with an anticipated half a billion coming in! Just saying!
Sure beats working for the likes of ICE. As I have said on many previous occasions: tell your kids to grow up to be execs at nonprofits funded by us—the taxpayers.
The International Rescue Committee “[engaged] in collusive behavior and misconduct….”
(US Department of Justice)
The International Rescue Committee(IRC for short), one of nine refugee resettlement contractors*** that do business with the US State Department, has agreed to repay US taxpayers nearly $7 million to settle a fraud case.
The fraud, which occurred during the Obama administration, was discovered in its USAID program to supposedly help Syrian refugees in Turkey.
Seven million is peanuts for the IRC!
If you follow my other blog Refugee Resettlement Watch you know that this contractor, a fake non-profit refugee agency, is financially the richest of the nine contractors having received $440 million in one recent year from American taxpayers. See 2018 IRS Form 990.
Note on that IRS Form 990 that (moneybags) Miliband pulls down an annual salary and benefits package of nearly $1 million.
The International Rescue Committee (“IRC”) Agrees to Pay $6.9 Million To Settle Allegations That It Performed Procurement Fraud by Engaging in Collusive Behavior and Misconduct on Programs Funded by the United States Agency for International Development
WASHINGTON – The Justice Department announced today that the International Rescue Committee (“IRC”) has agreed to pay $6.9 million to settle allegations under the False Claims Act related to United States Agency for International Development (“USAID”)-funded programming for beneficiaries affected by the conflict in Syria.
The settlement announced on March 16, 2021, is part of a civil resolution involving the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, USAID, and the USAID Office of Inspector General (OIG).
IRC is a global humanitarian aid, relief and development nongovernmental organization that provides emergency aid and long-term assistance to refugees. It is headquartered in New York, New York. In the early years of the conflict in Syria, IRC received USAID funding for humanitarian assistance programming, specifically to provide emergency cross-border humanitarian assistance to internally displaced persons located within Syria.
USAID’s OIG conducted investigations in Turkey into allegations that IRC staff participated in a collusion and kickback scheme with a Turkish supply ring, which included bid-rigging activities in the selection of goods and services contracts for cross-border humanitarian relief into Syria. USAID OIG and the USAO-DC Civil Division also investigated allegations that IRC staff received kickbacks, steered bid procurement tenders, and allowed conflicts of interest between staff and suspect vendors. The investigation revealed that conduct by IRC staff resulted in the procurement of goods at unreasonably high prices, which were subsequently invoiced to USAID from October 2012 to December 2015.
USAO-DC Civil Division and USAID OIG thoroughly examined all source documents including contracts, proposals, contract terms, and invoices, in the lead-up to IRC’s agreement to pay the United States $6,934,500 to settle the False Claims Act allegations.
We are happy to bring this case to resolution and will continue to work with Offices of Inspectors General to ensure that humanitarian aid dollars that are targeted for humanitarian assistance for displaced persons are not compromised by lax oversight controls but are used appropriately to help those in dire need,” said Acting United States Attorney Channing D. Phillips.
Acting USAID Inspector General Thomas J. Ullom stated, “This settlement sends a strong message that USAID-funded implementers must have systems in place to detect, deter, and prevent fraud in humanitarian assistance programming. Aid organizations that lack proper monitoring and oversight controls over their procurement processes put taxpayer dollars at risk and compromise the delivery of critical assistance to those in need. USAID OIG’s global investigative operations will continue to shine a light on and drive consequences for fraud affecting USAID programming.”
Fraud is not rare in the refugee resettlement industry as we noted here last month.
***For New Readersthese are the nine federal refugee contractors who worked to put Biden and Harris in the White House; are lobbying for millions of illegal aliens to be transformed into legal voting citizens; and they have succeeded in getting the new administration to promise to raise the ceiling for refugee admissions to 125,000 for next year FY2022—that is the highest cap in 29 years.
The 62,500 cap you may have been hearing about is for the remainder of FY21. FY21 ends in less than 7 months. So far Biden is dragging his feeton signing necessary documents to open the spigot.
The contractors are in my opinion fake charities because they are largely paid by you, the taxpayer, for their work of changing America by changing the people, and in so doing, are putting struggling Americans last!
Former Cleveland Clinic doctor accused of sharing research funded by US with Chinese government
CLEVELAND (WJW) — A former Cleveland Clinic research doctor and Case Western Reserve University professor is accused of receiving federal grant money for research in the United States and not disclosing similar funding he received for research in the People’s Republic of China.
He is also accused of sharing research he did in the U.S. with the Chinese government.
Dr. Qing Wang, was arrested Wednesday afternoon at his home in Shaker Heights. He is being charged with false claims and wire fraud related to more than $3.6 million in grant funding that he and his research group at the Cleveland Clinic received from the National Institutes of Health.
According to a federal complaint, Dr. Wang “knowingly failed to disclose to NIH that he held an affiliation and the position of Dean of the College of Life Sciences and Technology at the Huazhong University of Sciences and Technology” in China. It alleges that he received $3 million in grants from the Chinese government for some of the same scientific research that was funded by the NIH grant, but never disclosed that information.
“Why should another country and another group of citizens benefit from information that we funded here in the United States?” said Jeffrey Fortunato, an assistant special-agent-in-charge with the Cleveland Division of the FBI.
Dr. Wang is also accused of participating in a Chinese government program that recruited individuals with access to or knowledge of foreign technology and intellectual property.