When Cuomo demands action, millions get wasted
In a rush to please Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the state Department of Transportation wasted $12 million in building a handful of highway rest areas and tourist-welcome centers.
No, state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s latest audit doesn’t explicitly blame the gov, but Cuomo’s demand that everything get built in time for tourist season is plainly why the DOT went ahead with construction without drawing up full capital plans for the projects, in violation of its own regulations.
This is the same “I Love NY” program that saw the gov waste millions on signs that violated federal highway-safety regulations.
The lack of planning led to some truly massive bungling: Work was nearly done on a Long Island rest stop when the DOT realized it hadn’t included a sewer system. That last-minute fix cost $7 million.
Then, too, the DOT spent $1.4 million to clear a site in Schodack before thinking to measure the lot and realize it was too small.
It’s the same problem that allowed Cuomo to burn billions on failed economic-development projects: No one’s left at any state agency who dares tell the governor “no.”
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