Local News

Insider to oversee quality control, risk management at DOT

Posted September 2, 2008

— A 33-year veteran of the state Department of Transportation has a new post – making sure the organization cuts wasteful spending.

Bruce Dillard was appointed Friday to the position of Inspector General in an effort to better evaluate risk-management systems, promote accountability and efficiency and minimize fraud, waste and abuse.

Last month, top agency officials announced they were reorganizing the department after a $3.6 million report by international management consultant McKinsey & Co. found DOT's structure prevented divisions from working well with each other and that contributed to delays and overspending on products, specifically road construction.

Dillard has been an auditor with the DOT since 1975 and has directed the department's External Audit Branch since 1990. He will lead a 46-member staff responsible for quality control and risk management.

"We're kind of the watchdogs for DOT spending," he said Tuesday.

DOT senior management looked at a handful of internal candidates for the position following the McKinsey report, which recommended 20 changes to the way the department is run.

"They didn't indicate we had a problem with new ideas and freshness," Roberto Canales, DOT's deputy secretary for transit, said. "They indicated we had a problem with actually implementing them."

In recent years, the DOT has been riddled by delayed and troubled road projects, including a botched paving job on a 10.6-mile stretch of Interstate 40 in Durham County that cost the department $21 million to fix.

In February, the Office of the State Auditor released a report criticizing the DOT for being deficient in key management controls and for not meeting accountability requirements.

State Auditor Les Merritt said Tuesday that he believes the DOT is taking steps in the right direction with the creation of the Office of Inspector General and the appointment of Dillard to head it.

A review following the I-40 job resulted in at least 20 recommendations. Dillard said one of his priorities is to go back and see how many have been implemented and whether they are working.


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  • badmonkey Sep 3, 2008

    most everything will still be the same, it was just more of a slight reorganization....only a few new positions....

  • Heel from Hell Sep 3, 2008

    What planet do these people live on? A $3MM engagement with a consultant to tell you that DOT is inefficient, ineffectual, and inept. Then, to become more efficient, you not only add another layer of bureaucracy but create more expense (presumably).

    I heard him say on WRAL last night that he had 40+ employees under him. While I don't know whether those were re-deployed folks (maybe they cut back on the # of folks holding the Stop/Slow signs), I suspect there is new NIE in there somewhere.

    Simply do what you say and be accountable, and this may hold some promise. Unless the culture changes (and it doesn't sound like they're exactly shaking things up), though, we have some tough sledding in front of us as citizens.

  • pbjbeach Sep 3, 2008

    with regards to the insider to oversee the quality control @ ncdot that is a joke the ncdot doesn't really want anyone doing real quality control on its' highway projects as that if they really allowed someone to perform real quality control on highway project it might impact a contractors bottom line to severly . i was recently fired for just trying to do my job @ ncdot they just pay lip severice to anyone doing their job within the ncdot thank you

  • WRAL is joe_dirt Sep 3, 2008


    Good one ut do you have something a little more original than entry-level comedy?

  • OnlyOneVoice Sep 3, 2008

    The only way to improve the DOT is to get rid of the current administration (including Tippett - who isn't worth the air he takes up).

    Pat McCrory has my vote. There is no way that Purdue would make the needed changes around here.

  • RainierBeer Sep 3, 2008

    First recommendation: Fire the ineffective Lyndo Tippett!

  • drewbyh Sep 3, 2008

    Fox watchin' the hen house.

  • etshoney Sep 3, 2008

    Let's just keep electing those Democrats.......The scandals just keep coming and we see in the polls that Purdue is ahead!!!! She has been in the middle of all this garbage for years. They need to fire all the execs at the DOT and start all over. Do you really think Purdue will do that? Keep voting for those Dems just like Daddy did!!!!

  • willis2 Sep 3, 2008

    I guess Bruce wants a 34-year career at DOT.

  • kevinaj06 Sep 3, 2008

    OK, I used to work at DOT. One of the reasons i left was because of inefficiency of the department. Now i'm not going to talk bad about anyone there but they really need to have a top down replacement of management in some sections.

    It's true that units do not work together and are suspicious of each other. DOT is also too political. Board members with the loudest bark get their projects greenlighted.

    For the sake of the thousands of good employees at DOT, I hope this audit really helps. Although I am suspicious that a 25 year employee got the appointment. Hmmmmm, smells fishy to me. He'll retire with a cushy packaged and in 5 years, this will still be an issue.

    Election time is a good time to move folks around. When the new administration comes in, folks will either leave, or get promoted to jobs they have no business doing but because they were bumped up previously, the new administration will think that they know what they are doing. It's a shame.