Interim Report on Seattle Central Link Light Rail Project
In response to a request from Rep. Hal Rogers, Chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation and Related Agencies, we provided an interim report on the decision by the Department of Transpiration in January to approve a $500 million grant application for the Seattle Central Link Light Rail Project. Our audit found that Federal Transit Administration did not perform satisfactory due diligence in the grant application review process and the agency's December 2000 review of the Project was not thorough enough to serve as a predicate for approval of the Project on January 19, 2001.
We recommended the Secretary direct FTA to hold funds and funding decisions for the Project in abeyance until (1) Sound Transit identifies and discloses all issues that could materially impact cost, schedule, and scope; (2) FTA and its project management oversight consultant validate the estimated completion cost; (3) FTA and its financial management oversight consultant validate that funding sources are sufficient to complete the Project; and (4) Congress has the necessary 60 days to review the Project’s grant agreement. The Secretary concurred with our recommendations.