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Audit looks to “cut fat” at MDOT

Photo by News Mississippi

State Auditor Shad White has launched a study to identify savings and “cut fat” at the Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT). The Auditor’s office will hire private-sector experts to conduct the analysis with guidance from the Auditor’s office. The study began with the release of the Auditor’s request for proposals (RFP) to all qualified consultants interested in conducting the performance audit.

“My office is pleased to begin this analysis of places to save money in road and bridge spending, and I’m thankful that the Legislature and Governor placed their trust in my office to identify any waste in infrastructure spending,” said White. “We’re ready to step up to the challenge.”

During the 2018 special session, the Mississippi Infrastructure Modernization Act of 2018 (MIMA) authorized new spending by the Department of Transportation and as part of the law required the Auditor’s office to oversee the completion of a performance audit of MDOT. The Auditor’s RFP scope states that the performance audit could examine, among other things:

  • whether engineering fees charged to taxpayers are excessive,
  • whether road and bridge projects are being effectively managed to avoid project delays and cost overruns,
  • whether project selection can be improved,
  • whether the most cost-effective vendors are being chosen,
  • and how MDOT performs compared to other states or private sector infrastructure companies.

The request for proposals is the description of the scope of the performance audit. It begins the formal process for outside experts to bid on the contract to conduct this audit. The Auditor’s office will accept proposals from prospective bidders until March 4, 2019, at 2 p.m. After selection, the consultant and Auditor must submit the report to the Mississippi Legislature no later than December 31, 2019.

“My goal is to find a recognized company with private sector expertise in rooting out waste,” White said. “Our hope is to spread the word about this critical project to attract as many bidders as possible and find the best partner available.”

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