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Embattled HUD secretary to step down April 18

Successor will tackle FHA expansion, RESPA reform

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Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Alphonso Jackson announced today he will step down next month in the face of investigations involving allegations of favoritism and calls from Democrats for his resignation. Jackson's resignation, effective April 18, leaves open the possibility that HUD will be led by an interim chief in the final months of a lame-duck administration, even as the department implements a major expansion of FHA loan programs and pushes for an overhaul of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, or RESPA. In announcing his resignation, Jackson made no mention of four ongoing investigations involving allegations of favoritism at HUD, including claims that he steered contracts to friends through housing authorities in New Orleans and the U.S. Virgin Islands. "There comes a time when one must attend more diligently to personal and family matters," Jackson said in a statement. "Now is such a time for me." After Jackson refused to...