Monday, March 2, 2009

NTTA overstated assets in 2009 accounting report

By GORDON DICKSON - Fort Worth Star Telegram - March 1, 2009

Accounting mistake may cost North Texas Tollway Authority

North Texas Tollway Authority officials say they overstated their assets by $105.5 million in a report late last year, an accounting error that could affect the agency’s financial health.

However, officials with the Plano-based agency, say they’ve taken steps to prevent such a mistake in the future. The agency is joining with the Texas Transportation Department to build the Southwest Parkway toll road in Fort Worth this year.

The agency misapplied a Transportation Department grant in August and September, placing it into the agency’s construction fund even though officials hadn’t yet met all the grant conditions, according to a statement released by tollway officials last week. The conditions were satisfied in November.

To provide a clearer financial picture, unaudited monthly reports will be consolidated with audited year-end statements, tollway officials said in the statement.
Read more in the Fort Worth Star Telegram

Tollway board members are eager to find a replacement for ousted Executive Director Jorge Figueredo, who departed in December, said Kenneth Barr, a board member and a former Fort Worth mayor.

In the meantime, Chief Financial Officer Janice Davis is serving as interim director. She is not a candidate for executive director, although several board members have expressed trust in her.

"Janice Davis said she will not put her name on something if it isn’t right. and I respect that," Barr said.

Davis’ career also includes stints at chief financial officer for the city of Atlanta and for the Dallas school district and as finance and budget director for Dallas/Fort Worth Airport.

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