Program Design Deficiencies in the MTA All-Agency Contractor Evaluation (ACE) Program

MTA/OIG #2009-15

In 2009, we made recommendations designed to promote a more accurate and timely identification of poor performing companies, including a prohibition against overrating, and incorporation in the ACE system of evaluations of subcontractors (who perform some 70 to 80 percent of the work involved in capital contracts). We also made a recommendation based on our finding that a year after completion of the 100th Street bus depot, NYC Transit discovered that several portions of the building’s brick façade had not been properly tied to the building’s steel structure and were falling to the sidewalk. Although the cause of this problem was attributed to poor quality work performed by the contractor, the contractor’s final Satisfactory rating remained uncontroverted because there was no practice at that time to conduct evaluations after construction was completed. Our recommendation calls for post-final evaluations to be conducted where poor performance is identified after contract closure.

In 2010, the MTA revised its All Agency Guidelines and developed measures to implement all of our recommendations fully except the one regarding subcontractors. While the agencies agreed to increase their exception-reporting of problematic subcontractors, still under discussion as of this writing is our recommendation for the collection of that information in a central repository and expanding reporting to include regular assessment of all subcontractors, even those performing satisfactorily.


The New York Times 2/3/2010 - MTA Fails to Honestly Rate Contractors' Work, Report Says

The New York Post 2/3/2010 - MTA 'upgrades" bad contractors: report

The Daily News 2/3/2010 - MTA is hit for rolling with bad contractors, new report reveals

The Chief 2/12/10 - Failing Upward: MTA IG Says Contractors Bungle Yet Prosper

Newsday 2/2/2010 - Report: System can't keep MTA from rehiring flawed contractors