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Oversight of the Cost Recovery Program of the Central Artery/Tunnel Project

In response to a request from Reps. Don Young, Chairman of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and Michael Capuano, we reviewed efforts by FHWA and the Central Artery/Tunnel Project, Boston, to recover costs paid by the project for change orders. The change orders might have been caused by design errors or omissions by design and consulting contractors. We reported that: (1) past efforts have not resulted in substantial recoveries—8 years of work yielded only $30,000 in recoveries from a single consultant; and (2) efforts have not been timely—76 items have been under review from 2 to 7 years. Adequate controls are important to ensure that costs are recovered when appropriate and assure taxpayers that the process is credible. The parties involved, including the Governor’s office, need to agree on a proper governance framework and an appropriate review methodology.

The letter to Rep. Young is posted here. We sent an identical letter to Rep. Capuano.