Photo credit: @julesdwit.
A not-for-profit media organization supported by people like you.
WNYC contributing editor for politics and investigations Bob Hennelly discusses the federal investigation into NYC's big construction firms' billing practices for major public projects.
Most, if not all, construction projects operate on a set schedule. Depending on the type of building, these projects could last anywhere from a few months to a couple of years. A skyscraper like New York City's One World Trade Center (formerly the Freedom Tower) will take about seven years to complete. Regardless of the scale of the project, a high priority - in addition to safety - is completing the construction on time, and if possible, under budget. There are quite a few ways crews can achieve both, and the idea is not as difficult as it might sound.
A response to Sheldon from Brooklyn.
How am I wrong for pointing out that some of our government bureacrats are woefully inept at managing public works projects? I for one have paid more than pay more than my fair share in taxes and it pisses me off when I see those dollars wasted or stolen.
Google "city time scandal" and read a few articles. Let me know if you think paying a company $40,000,000 dollars more than what was budgeted to a company that committed fraud was the right thing to do.
is there any oversight on the Gowanus Expressway construction project? this is one of the most offensive examples of these construction companies rubbing it in the noses of the taxpayers in this city. it's so obvious that they are doing an unbelievable job of stretching this project on ad infinitum and no one says peep about it. these people have jobs for LIFE at the expense of the taxpayer and residents in brooklyn. shameful.
This is another example of "too big to fail", wherein the public can't prosecute the firms because we have too many projects dependent upon them.
I've done work with people from Bovis. In terms of their actual work, they are a top notch company run by Ivy League people. But just like anyone, they will try to get over if they can - PUBLIC OR PRIVATE.
Really, construction billing fraud in NYC?!! Noooooooo. NO, can't be. You're kidding. This is a late April Fools bit right? Construction billing fraud in NYC, well well well, I'll be! LOL LMAO
Scott from Soho, just like you were wrong on the "city time" scandal, this is another example of a yet another set of PRIVATE companies (the virtue of efficiency and honesty by many,) betraying the the public trust - just like government supposedly does, in this case for profit.
It is not shocking to find out that government managed projects are plagued with fraud. What's shocking is that nobody seem to be overseeing the different projects. Who is the individual in charge of managing these projects and making sure they are on budget?
NJ has not been any better with regard to fraud but at least Chris Christie realized that the proposed new tunnel was going to be a complete free for all for the corrupt contractors and government officials. I think Brian should give him a thumbs up for shutting down the project and saving the taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars in government waste.
Is anyone looking into these projects:
Houston Street between Mott and Broadway- 6 years of construction for 3 blocks?Washington Square Park has been fenced off for years with what appears to be zero progress.East River Park has also been under construction for years.City Time - I know they have finalized the settlement but the city paid $40,000,000 extra to a company that intentionally over billed .McCarren Park Pool- $50,000,000 is twice the going rate for that type of project.
If all of this waste is happening at the city level just think about what is happening at the federal level.
Before we utter a word asking for taxpayers to "Pay Your Fair" we should be looking at our elected officials and the bureaucracy and hold them accountable for wasting or stealing the tax dollars already paid.
Email addresses are required but never displayed.
Brian Lehrer leads the conversation about what matters most now in local and national politics, our own communities and our lives.
Subscribe on iTunes
WNYC 93.9 FM and AM 820 are New York's flagship public radio
stations, broadcasting the finest programs from NPR, PRI and American Public Media, as well as a wide range of award-winning local
programming. WNYC is a division of
New York Public Radio.