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DOT Earns High Marks From Transportation Commission

Wed February 20, 2002 - Southeast Edition
Rusty Ennemoser

Special to CEG

In July, it was reported that the Florida Department of Transportation’s (DOT) customers gave it a good report card, giving it high marks on road signs and markings, overall safety on state roads, and the ability to get the information needed from DOT staff.

Now, the Florida Transportation Commission (FTC), which reviews, monitors and evaluates the department’s policies and performance, has also ranked the DOT highly in its annual Performance and Production Review.

The nine members of the commission are appointed by the Governor to serve four-year terms. They must have private sector business managerial experience and may not place local needs above state issues. In the corporate sector, the commission might be compared to a board of directors, casting an objective eye on the agency’s performance.

Each year, the commission evaluates how effective the DOT has been in addressing the transportation needs of the state through the implementation of its work plan.

A cross-functional working group, composed of representatives from the FTC, DOT, the transportation industry and private citizens, develops qualitative performance and productivity measures, assessing performance in production, finance, safety, capacity improvements and disadvantaged business enterprise and minority business programs. The working group meets periodically to address revisions to the measures, based on new and improved data and the changing dynamics of the transportation industry.

After each annual evaluation, the findings are submitted to the Governor and the legislative transportation and appropriation committees. If the findings show that the DOT did not perform satisfactorily, the report must recommend actions to improve performance.

“Overall, the performance of the department is excellent,” said Norman Mansour, chairman of the Performance Measures Working Group and a member of the commission. “The department has performed exceptionally well over the year. When going over the areas where the goals weren’t specifically achieved, there are extenuating circumstances. After all, if you are hitting all of your objectives, sometimes you start to question whether the bar is too low.”

“DOT employees can all be proud to have received another excellent review from the Transportation Commission,” said Secretary Tom Barry. “It’s a direct reflection of all of us and our partners doing our best for the people of Florida.”

Bridge Repair

The department achieved 89.6 percent of its goal, having repaired 120 bridges of 134 planned. In addition, the department repaired three bridges planned for future fiscal years, and eight bridges not in the current or future plans were added and repaired during the year.

Bridge Replacement

The department achieved 97.6 percent of its objective, having replaced 41 bridges of 42 planned.


The department achieves almost 98.5 percent of its goal, having resurfaced 2,163 of 2,195 lane miles planned. In addition, it advanced and resurfaced 24 lane miles that had been planned for future fiscal years.

Pavement Condition

The percentage of state road lane miles meeting standards was 78.8 percent, falling just short of the department objective of 80 percent.

Routine Maintenance

The department achieved 105 percent of the objective of a system-wide maintenance rating of 80.

Capacity Improvements:


Of 266 lane miles of capacity improvement projects planned, 252 lane miles or 94.7 percent were let. A total of 61 additional lane miles of capacity, not included in the original plan, were let during the year, thus increasing system capacity by 313 lane miles.

Capacity Improvements: Public


The department achieved 93.4 percent of its objective, committing $312.5 million of a planned $334.5 million in public transportation capacity improvement projects.

Consultant Contracts

The department achieved 97.3 percent of its goal, having executed 288 of the 296 contracts planned to be executed during the year. The department also executed an additional 72 consultant contracts that were not included in the original plan.

Right-of-Way Acquisition

The department achieved 91.5 percent of its plan, having certified right of way on 65 or 71 projects planned for the year. Three projects planned for certification in future years were advanced to certification in FY 2000/01. A total of 17 projects were added and certified during the year.

Construction Contracts

The department achieved 98.7 percent of its plan, having executive 469 of the 475 projects it planned to execute during the year. The department also executed two projects advanced from future fiscal years and an additional 66 projects that were not included in the current or future plans.

Construction Contract Time Adjustments

For the 362 construction contracts completed during FY 2000/01, the original contract time increased an average of 15.5 percent as a result of days added to the contract and used by the contractor (excluded weather days).

Construction Contract Cost Adjustment

For the 362 contracts completed during FY 2000/01, the total original contract amount of $1,112 million increased by 11.2 percent due to cost adjustments, for a total fine contract amount of $1,237 million.

Commitment of Federal Funds

The department committed 100 percent ($1,281 million) of federal funds. They would have been subject to forfeiture at federal fiscal year end (Sept. 30, 2001) if not committed. The department requested an additional $40 million in redistributed federal funds of which it received $8.6 million.

Management of Administrative Costs

Administrative costs were 1.5 percent of the total program for FY 2000/01, or $66.9 million of a total program of $4.6 billion. Based on actual dollar amounts of administrative costs, there was a 5.0 percent increase (from $63.7 million to $66.9 million) in administrative costs in FY 2000/01 compared to FY1999/00.

Cash Management

Actual cash receipts of $3.9 billion for FY 2000/01 were 2.5 percent higher ($94.4 million) than the department’s August 2000 forecasted receipts of $3.8 billion. Actual cash disbursements of $3.8 billion for FY 2000/01 were $3.5 million higher than the department’s August 2000 forecasted disbursements.

Cash Balance

The department’s lowest end-of-month cash balance was $301.2 million or 7.9 percent of its total outstanding contractual obligations of $3.8 billion.

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Utilization

For all construction and consultant contracts financed in part by federal funds, DBE participation was 8.9 percent, surpassing the 8-percent goal. For all construction and consultant contracts that are 100-percent state funded, DBE participation was 10.8 percent.

For more information, call 850/414-4105 or visit to see the entire Performance and Production Review.

(Reprinted with permission from the Florida Transportation Commission and FDOT.) CEG

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