State audit finds ‘transparency’ problems with Colorado Department of Transportation’s budget

Colorado Public Radio: Colorado’s Department of Transportation has significant budgeting problems, according to a state audit released Monday.

The audit found problems with the “completeness and transparency” of CDOT’s budget, which totaled $1.56 billion in the 2017 fiscal year. Key points from the audit include:

The agency lacked processes to detect and prevent employee fraud. The auditor’s analysis found “suspicious patterns and anomalies,” but did not identify any specific instances of fraud.

CDOT’s fiscal year 2017 budget plan did not include all legally required information, such as more than $1 billion that carried forward from prior years. That made it difficult for auditors to check CDOT’s budget against how it actually spent its money. In fact, the department spent $582.7 million more that year than was approved. “Incomplete information reduces the effectiveness of the budget plan as a management tool and decreases transparency and accountability of the department’s budget,” the auditor wrote.

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