Inadequate Management Controls in Metro-North Railroad's Communications Division

MTA/OIG #2014-26

Previously, the Office of the MTA Inspector General conducted an investigation that found numerous examples of inadequate and often non-existent controls over the work activities of the employees assigned to the Communications Field Systems unit (CFS), a subdivision of the Communications Division. In our 2013 reports on machinists and field crews assigned to the railroad’s Track and Structures divisions, OIG also documented serious and widespread abuses, including employee time-stealing and falsification of records, gross lack of productivity, and poor supervision of field crews.

Since then the OIG has worked closely with Metro-North top management to apprise them of both the managerial deficiencies and individual acts of misconduct. In this letter, OIG proposes that Metro-North establish sound recordkeeping practices and ensure that the practices are followed by its maintainers and their supervisors. OIG also recommends that Metro-North widely expand the utilization of proven management tools such as the Automatic Vehicle Location Monitoring (AVLM) system, and commit to monitoring the performance of its field crews and supervisors to ensure that they are productive and accountable.