Recurring Findings

Transportation: Recurring Most severe Noncompliance
Federal Program Issue First Year Reported
Department's Assertion Page Number
High-Speed Rail Corridors and Intercity Passenger Rail Service - Capital Assistance Grants (High Speed Rail) During our audit for fiscal year 2012-13, we reported that Caltrans did not have procedures in place to comply with federal Davis-Bacon Act requirements because it did not obtain certified weekly payrolls from contractors for the High Speed Rail program. In fiscal year 2013-14, Caltrans had not yet implemented procedures to obtain the weekly certified payrolls. Failure to obtain the required weekly certified payrolls increases the risk of noncompliance with Davis-Bacon Act requirements. 2012-13
Caltrans currently has approved Davis-Bacon compliance language. For future contracts, Caltrans Legal will determine Davis-Bacon applicability and this determination will be documented in the project file. For future contracts under which Davis-Bacon does apply, Caltrans will ensure that the appropriate language is included in the contract and weekly certified payrolls will be required to be submitted by the contractor with their invoice reimbursement requests. Caltrans Legal is in the process of reviewing all existing contracts to determine the applicability of Davis Bacon provisions and whether the proper language was included in the contracts if Davis-Bacon does apply. Once it is determined which contracts require Davis-Bacon, and that the proper language was included in the contract, contract managers will notify the contractor to submit weekly certified payrolls. Caltrans Legal has completed its review of the contract funded by Grant number FR HSR 0022 11-01-00. Legal determined that Davis-Bacon does apply but that the contract did not contain Davis-Bacon compliance language. Caltrans will seek to amend this contract to add the Davis-Bacon requirement. If the contractor does not agree to amend, Caltrans will not be able to require submission of certified weekly payrolls. Regarding the status of the remaining two grants, the contract for Grant number FR-HSR-0058-11-01-01 was completed as of August 31, 2014 and is in the process of closeout with FRA. Further, Caltrans Legal is still in the process of reviewing the contract for Grant number FR-HSR-0021-11-01-01. 42
Highway Planning and Construction During our audit for fiscal year 2012-13, we reported that Caltrans did not have adequate controls in place to ensure required materials certifications were prepared. The materials certifications are required by federal regulation and provide evidence that proper tests were performed in accordance with the approved Caltrans quality assurance program. In July 2009, Caltrans implemented procedures to obtain materials certifications for projects accepted after this date. We tested 53 projects both prior and subsequent to July 2009 since the regulation has been in place prior to 2009. We found that Caltrans was unable to locate materials certifications for nine projects accepted prior to July 2009 and one project accepted after July 2009. Failure to maintain support for materials certification testing increases the risk that materials do not conform to approved plans and specifications. 2012-13
Caltrans recognizes the importance of preparation and maintenance of required project documentation. Prior to July 2009, the Caltrans Construction Manual instructed resident engineers to prepare a memorandum for project materials acceptance. Form CEM-6302 was created in July 2009 for documentation of project materials acceptance. Caltrans has procedures in place that detail the records to be assembled with a checklist requiring sign-off as to the completeness of the project history file. For this audit, the materials memorandum or certification was not located for 10 projects. Of the 10 projects without a materials memorandum or certificate, all but one project was accepted prior to July 2009. As a result, the Division of Construction is aware that this may continue to be a challenge on projects accepted prior to July 2009. On October 24, 2013, a construction policy directive was issued to remind staff of the importance of project documentation at project completion. Construction is editing the Construction Manual to clarify the list of documents to be maintained in the project history file required for permanent records retention. Staff are informed of changes to the Construction Manual through a construction policy bulletin. Caltrans will continue to inform staff when changes to record retention policies occur through updates to the Construction Manual. 40
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