Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Inspector General Questions Missouri Airport Stimulus Project


A $2 million dollar economic stimulus project at an airport in Warrensburg is being questioned in a report issued by the inspector general of the federal Transportation Department.

The inspector general found that the money awarded to the Warrensburg-Skyhaven airport for a new apron was among a list of projects of questionable merit.
It's just one of about 50 approved projects listed by the government watchdog that did not meet the grant criteria or had a previous history of mismanaging federal grants.
"First, FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) selected more than 50 projects falling below its NPR threshold of 62, raising concerns about whether the agency’s process resulted in funding the highest priority ARRA (American Recovery & Reinvestment Act) projects," wrote Inspector General Calvin Scovel in report. "Moreover, based on our preliminary review of FAA project justifications and other information, we identified six low scoring projects for which the economic merit—a key ARRA requirement—may be questionable," Scovel went on.
The Warrensburg-Skyhaven airport was listed as one of four airports that do not provide commercial passenger service, have limited flight operations, and received NPR scores ranging from 43 to 50.
Scovel said that the FAA cited three main reasons why low scoring projects were selected for stimulus grants: (1) projects were ready to go, (2) projects could be completed within the 2-year ARRA timeframe, and (3) projects would help ensure widespread geographic distribution of funds.
The third, however, is not requirement by law.
You can read the entire DOT IG report HERE.

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