Today Senator Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord), Chair of the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee responds to the State Auditor’s Report on the Department of Transportation.
“Today’s report follows up on a hearing I held in November of 2011. Then we heard from key staff at the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) regarding the allegations of improprieties within Caltrans’ program to inspect construction of new structures including the Bay Bridge,” said Committee Chair, Senator Mark DeSaulnier.
“I had grave concerns then, and I still do now, about the culture at Caltrans that allowed these events to occur. We will hold a hearing and ask the State Auditor to present her findings to the Committee. In addition, I will follow up on my request to the Attorney General to investigate potentially criminal activities within the Foundation Inspection Branch of the California Department of Transportation.”
“State government cannot be a safe haven for employees who shirk their public safety duties and who steal state property for private purposes. California motorists have placed a great deal of trust in Caltrans,” said DeSaulnier. “That has been shaken, and Caltrans needs to re-earn that trust. We appreciate the brave public servants at CalTrans who brought these issues to light.”
DeSaulnier has introduced Senate Bill 486, which creates the Office of Legal Compliance and Ethics (OLCE) within the Transportation Agency to conduct audits and investigations of the state Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and publicly report its findings to the California Transportation Commission (CTC), the Governor, and the Legislature.