Habitat For Humanity of Westchester expelled by national organization

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What was formerly known as Habitat for Humanity of Westchester County will no longer operate under its parent organization's name.

Habitat for Humanity has been one of the most celebrated nonprofit groups in the Hudson Valley for years, with 10,000 volunteers and hundreds of renovated homes to show for it.

The local chapter abruptly changed its name over the summer and became The Fuller Center for Housing of Greater New York City. Officials said at the time that they no longer wanted to pay what they called “exorbitant licensing fees to the national chapter.”

News 12 has learned that the group was actually forced to drop its name because it was expelled by the national organization.

News 12 reached out to Bryan Thomas, a spokesman from Habitat for Humanity International, by phone from Atlanta about the reasons it severed its ties.

"It was following concerns after an operational audit that we conducted," said Thomas.

Officials from Habitat for Humanity weren't specific about what the audit revealed, and no one is publicly alleging any wrongdoing.

They did stress that they parted way with the local chapter after not being able to agree on operations, governance and stewardship.

If money was an issue, no one is saying. Published reports say the local chapter took in more than $1 million last year.

"After the audit, we made the decision we needed to make for our organization and I can't comment beyond that," says Thomas.

Officials at Habitat for Humanity say they plan to stay active in the area and will announce reorganization plans in early 2019.

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