Task force: New York DOT wasted $210 million

| 4/23/2010

A New York state Senate task force says the state DOT wasted more than $210 million in unnecessary spending during the past year.

The New York Senate Task Force on Government Efficiency identified wasteful spending in areas of employee overtime, independent contracts, outside consultants, project cost overruns, and unnecessary replacement of steel signs and concrete barriers.

The biggest area of waste was $46.5 million outsourced to independent contractors. The 12-member task force said the work could have been done in-house.

NYDOT spent $43.8 million in outside consultants. Again, the task force believed much of that consulting work could have been accomplished with DOT resources.

Delays in completing paperwork for projects added $10 million in unnecessary spending, the task force found.

To the DOT’s credit, the state did reduce overtime spending by 12 percent during the past year. Despite the reduction, the Senate task force still found $3.5 million in unnecessary overtime pay.

The task force report, dated April 2010, included recommendations to the DOT to trim waste and suggested an additional $60 million in potential cost savings to the department.

– By David Tanner, associate editor