New York State Bridge Authority

Internal Controls Over Contracting and Procurement Practices

The New York State Bridge Authority operates and maintains five toll bridges that cross the Hudson River. We examined the adequacy of the Authority’s system of internal controls over its contracting, procurement and related functions. We found that the Authority had established detailed policies and procedures for contracting and procurement, and generally followed these policies and procedures. However, the Authority sometimes avoided competitive procurement requirements by adding unrelated work to existing contracts. In addition, Authority construction contracts may not have been adequately overseen by the Authority’s Board of Commissioners, as Board members did not receive routine written reports on the status of each ongoing project and there was no documentation indicating that Board members were fully informed about cost increases or other important project developments, even when projects significantly exceeded their budgets. We recommended improvements that would enhance the Board’s oversight of Authority construction projects.

In addition, in May 2003, the Authority’s former Executive Director resigned amid allegations regarding his travel expenses. We found that, since that resignation, the Board had initiated a number of corrective actions to address control weaknesses that were exploited by the former Executive Director.

For a complete copy of Report 2004-S-20 click here.
For a copy of the 90-day response click here.