Audit Reveals Wasted Government Spending Over Bungled Sewage Project

Steven Bobson, Europe & Americas Editor
December 09, 2010 /

With failures in the dump and drain field of Fort Flagler State Park and incomplete repair works, State Auditor Brian Sonntag said in an audit report released this week that the Parks and Recreation Commission has rendered government spending of more than $7 million useless.

However, the Parks and Recreation Commission contradicted parts of the findings of the report, stating that government spending increased only because focus on the project has been redirected from merely fixing the failed sewage dump and drainage, which would cost $140,000, to the replacement of the entire sewage system.

Fort Flagler State Park, marine camping park in Washington state, which was completed in 2005 by someone having no professional certification to do the job at $1.4 million for its construction and design, failed shortly after its completion that year, which Sonntag described as one of the reasons the public lose their trust on government projects.

Virginia Painter, Parks and Recreation Commission spokesperson, admitted they lacked oversight into the quality of the work and allowed it to disregard the approved plan that resulted in the government spending to be fruitless, though she did not know the exact amount wasted. She said the commission found it hard to address the problem since the people working on the project have already left.

Trying to repair the failed project, the commission shelled out $1.3 million in 2006 to hire the same consultant who made its previous design and another $3.2 million for a separate contractor who completed the drainage system in 2009, Painter said.

She admitted that the bungled government spending reflected the commission’s lack of quality control.


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