"If they would have put it closer to town, near facilities, then we would have supported it," Handley said. "They had no transportation, no way to get to town. I don't care who owned the property, it just wasn't the right place to have seniors or the handicapped, six miles out of town."
Handley said HUD investigators never returned to Mason County or issued a report on their findings.
The initial letter from HUD to the commission notes that the federal agency would charge the commission with a violation if investigators determined an "unlawful discrimination housing practice has occurred."
In the letter, federal housing officials also said they would dismiss the complaint, if there was "no reasonable cause."
Either way, federal officials said, they would notify Mason County commissioners in writing.
Commissioners never received a follow-up letter, Mason County Administrator John Gerlach said Thursday.
Gerlach and Mason County's three commissioners met privately for more than two hours Thursday with federal prosecutors and FBI agents at the Robert C. Byrd Courthouse in Charleston. Mason officials were interviewed individually about Pauley's land deal with Perdue.
After the meetings, Handley declined to comment on the interviews.
"Due to the ongoing investigation, we were asked not to make any comment," he said.
Federal agents raided Pauley's Charleston office last week, hauling away boxes of documents over three days.
The FBI returned the documents earlier this week. Bailey, Pauley's lawyer, released a letter from the U.S. Attorney's office that says Pauley won't face criminal charges, provided he continues to cooperate in the investigation.
Last December, the Perdues sold an 11-acre property to Pauley for $215,000.
Later that month, Pauley received $3.67 million in stimulus funds through the West Virginia Housing Development Fund to build the apartment complex, called Milton Place after Robin Perdue's late father, Milton Burdette.
Perdue sits on the Housing Development Fund's board of directors. He and his designee to the board never voted to approve Pauley's project.
That decision was made by two Housing Fund staff members, both certified public accountants, who reviewed and scored project applications. The Housing Fund awarded $18 million to 11 projects -- including Pauley's apartment complex -- across West Virginia.
Perdue and Pauley are longtime friends. Perdue has spoken at several groundbreaking ceremonies for Pauley's projects in recent years. Pauley has made at least two $1,000 contribution's to Perdue election campaign's since 2007, campaign records show.
Perdue, who has agreed to provide documents to the U.S. Attorney's Office, has said he followed "all legal procedures" during his property deal with Pauley.
Reach Eric Eyre at erice...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4869.