Government officials in Norfolk, Va., reported this week that $1 million in federal Ryan White AIDS grants given to the area went unspent during the fiscal year that ended February 29, the Virginian-Pilot reports. The unspent money represented 20% of the total federal grant given to the region. Health officials are disturbed by the report, as they estimate that 900 HIV-positive people didn't receive care during the previous fiscal year because local AIDS groups were unable to expand services due to financial constraints. Federal officials from the Health Resources and Services Administration plan to send a team of consultants to Norfolk to help AIDS officials revamp the region's HIV programs to fully serve the estimated 2,100 HIV-positive people in the area.
Norfolk officials have failed several times during the past decade to fully spend the region's federal AIDS money. To date, Norfolk has failed to spend more than $2.6 million in Ryan White funds. The region recently received a $4.8 million Ryan White grant for the 2004 fiscal year, a funding cut of $300,000. The HRSA has not yet released the 2004 money because of the region's failure to spend all of the 2003 grant.