MWAA’s Financial Management Controls Are Not Sufficient To Ensure Eligibility of Expenses on FTA’s Dulles Rail Project Grant
The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) is an independent public body responsible for the design and construction of Phases 1 and 2 of the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project. In March 2009, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) awarded MWAA the last in a series of grants for Phase 1 of the project, providing $975 million in Federal funds including $77 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds.
Despite significant Federal investment, MWAA lacks adequate controls to ensure that expenses claimed for funding on the FTA grant for Phase 1 of the Dulles rail project are eligible for reimbursement. Our review of 282 Dulles rail project transactions determined that MWAA claimed $36 million in unsupported costs and $119,000 in unallowable costs for Federal reimbursement on the project. Given that $289 million in Federal grant funds remain available for disbursement, improvements to MWAA’s financial management controls are critical for effective management of this Federal investment.
FTA concurred with the seven recommendations we made to increase FTA’s oversight of MWAA’s controls for ensuring that Dulles rail project expenses claimed are eligible for reimbursement.