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NATION : White House Aide, Target of Probe, Told to Shun Work on HUD Budget

<i> From Times wire service</i> s

A White House official has been told to stop dealing with certain aspects of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s budget because she is under congressional scrutiny for projects she handled while working at the scandal-scarred agency.

Janet Hale was informed of the move late Thursday by Budget Director Richard G. Darman, not long after she was notified that she would be asked to appear before a congressional subcommittee investigating allegations of mismanagement at HUD during the Ronald Reagan Administration.

Hale works in the Office of Management and Budget and her duties, until Thursday, included oversight of the entire HUD budget. Before moving to the White House she worked for several years at HUD, rising to deputy assistant secretary of housing.

Barbara Clay, an OMB spokeswoman, said today that Hale was told not to handle any HUD matters that relate to the investigation but can continue to work on other agency activities.

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Congressional investigators are looking into at least two projects Hale handled while at HUD, including approval of a North Carolina project involving a longtime friend of former HUD Secretary Samuel Pierce.


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