The Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs issued a report that found both a contractor and VA hospital officials demonstrated “shoddy planning” and poor oversight of an $8.7 million generator project that is $17.5 million over budget.
The VA in June 2014 hired Florida-based BCI Construction for $8.7 million to install a generator system and accompanying structure to house the unit at the Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center in Muskogee, Oklahoma. According to the inspector general, the VA did not submit an excavation plan for approval before beginning work. Subsequently, a hillside and parking lot collapsed, and the damage will cost $17.5 million to fix.
In addition to supervisory and procedural errors, the inspector general also found that BCI’s worksite to be unsafe. Safety inspections were sporadic, and 49 safety violations were never reported to the government contracting officer, which is a violation of VA policy.
The inspector general recommended requiring contracting officer representatives are qualified and follow VA regulations and mandating that employees follow safety inspection guidelines. The current Muskogee hospital director, hired after the collapse, said the facility has implemented the recommendations.
Keep reading this article at: https://www.constructiondive.com/news/report-lax-oversight-of-va-project-caused-177m-overrun-construction-col/520242/
Read the article in The Oklahoman newspaper on this subject at: http://newsok.com/article/5588662/construction-collapse-at-muskogee-va-hospital-will-cost-17.5-million-to-repair-and-was-the-result-of-poor-planning-federal-report-finds
Read the VA’s full OIG report at: https://www.oversight.gov/sites/default/files/oig-reports/VAOIG-15-04678-114.pdf