Controversial Housing Director Leaving Mexico
MEXICO - KOMU 8 News confirmed Thursday that Mexico Housing Authority executive director John Afoun is leaving his post to take a similar position in Moline, Illinois. Afoun will start the new job November 1st. Afoun has held the Mexico position since February 2009. A KOMU 8 News investigation earlier this year raised questions over Afoun's cell phone bill and his qualifications for the job. He is currently being examined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development out of St. Louis for those cell phone charges while traveling abroad from November 2009 to January 2010.
The city of Mexico would not confirm on Thursday whether or not Afoun is leaving his current position as executive director in Mexico. But Moline Housing Authority Controller Doug Chott confirmed that Afoun is starting November 1st as the Moline Housing Authority executive director.
Afoun was working in the Mexico Housing Authorities office on Thursday, but refused to speak to KOMU 8 News. A former Mexico Housing Authority employee who didn't want to be identified said people in Mexico were unaware of Afoun's new job position in Moline. The employee added even board members didn't know he was leaving his position in Mexico until two newspaper articles from Moline surfaced on Wednesday announcing Afoun's new employment.
Regional public affairs officer for the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Dale Gray, said the department is looking into the past actions of Afoun and the Mexico Housing Authority, but she would not classify it as an investigation. Gray said some actions were brought to the department's attention which are being looked at more closely. Gray said she hopes the department will know more within "a couple of weeks."