SEVERE WX : Winter Weather Advisory View Alerts
CLOSINGS: View Closings

HUD's cancellation of $31,000 dining furniture order confirmed

The pricey furniture order for Secretary Ben Carson's private dining room at the Department of Housing and Urban Deve...

Posted: Mar 2, 2018 10:54 AM
Updated: Mar 2, 2018 10:54 AM

The pricey furniture order for Secretary Ben Carson's private dining room at the Department of Housing and Urban Development "has officially been canceled," the owner of the company that made the sale confirmed to CNN.

Evelyn Sebree, of the interior design firm Sebree and Associates, told CNN on Thursday evening that the company had waived the restocking fee for HUD, so none of the agency's funds will be used for the order.

Earlier this week, a HUD employee claimed she had been demoted in part over her refusal to spend more than she was legally allowed to redecorate Carson's office.

In a November 2017 complaint, Helen Foster said she had been told to "find money" beyond the legal $5,000 limit for redecorating. In one instance, she said, a supervisor said that "$5,000 will not even buy a decent chair."

HUD also ordered a $31,000 dining room set for Carson's office, according to federal records and a whistleblower.

The furniture included a table, sideboard, breakfront -- all in mahogany -- and 10 mahogany chairs with a blue velvet finish, according to Sebree and Associates and purchase documents obtained by CNN.

HUD ordered the dining set in December and it was set for delivery in May.

On Thursday, CNN first reported a statement provided by a Carson adviser that said the secretary was requesting that the order for the dining set be canceled.

"I was as surprised as anyone to find out that a $31,000 dining set had been ordered," Carson said in the statement. "I have requested that the order be canceled. We will find another solution for the furniture replacement.

Carson also said that his wife, Candy Carson, had "asked if used furniture was an option," the first time there's been an indication that she had been involved in the process. "My wife also looked at catalogs and wanted to be sure that the color of the chair fabric of any set that was chosen matched the rest of the decor," he wrote.

"I made it known that I was not happy about the prices being charged and that my preference would be to find something more reasonable," he added.

Carson said he did not know the cost of the set when it was ordered.

In his statement, Carson said "the furniture is 30 to 50 years old" and added that it was "unsafe."

At the White House on Thursday, press secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters the agency was "looking for another option that is much more responsible with taxpayer dollars."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1347667

Reported Deaths: 42544
CountyCasesDeaths
Queens1684047996
Kings1652648230
Suffolk1365932708
Nassau1222002625
Bronx1129125351
Westchester900291851
New York807973512
Erie548731417
Richmond476411410
Monroe46265826
Rockland33327830
Orange30545670
Onondaga29147552
Dutchess18004341
Oneida17742375
Albany17620275
Niagara12933265
Broome12008280
Saratoga10020101
Schenectady9299144
Ulster8301204
Rensselaer7502113
Putnam700476
Chautauqua605376
Chemung5866111
Oswego520178
Ontario496983
Steuben4802132
Cayuga471076
St. Lawrence406564
Sullivan403853
Herkimer395575
Wayne393057
Genesee3875103
Cattaraugus362363
Jefferson361834
Madison333577
Livingston289442
Tompkins284525
Columbia276277
Cortland276255
Allegany248075
Montgomery246380
Clinton245819
Tioga236454
Fulton235561
Wyoming234344
Warren227044
Greene222064
Orleans204273
Chenango194348
Otsego189126
Washington170327
Lewis165525
Franklin13599
Seneca133147
Delaware113429
Essex104621
Schoharie9817
Yates89022
Schuyler76010
Hamilton1661
Unassigned80149
Out of NY0176
Rome
Cloudy
23° wxIcon
Hi: 26° Lo: 9°
Feels Like: 13°
Binghamton
Cloudy
24° wxIcon
Hi: 29° Lo: 11°
Feels Like: 11°
Rome
Cloudy
23° wxIcon
Hi: 27° Lo: 11°
Feels Like: 13°
Rome
Partly Cloudy
23° wxIcon
Hi: 27° Lo: 4°
Feels Like: 13°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
2021 Golfer's Paradise Card - 21 Courses for only $99.99
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve