CONNECTICUT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION NEWS RELEASE 2800 BERLIN TURNPIKE P.O. BOX 317546 NEWINGTON CONNECTICUT 06131-7546
FOR RELEASE: Upon Receipt
CONNECTICUT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
2800 BERLIN TURNPIKE P.O. BOX 317546 NEWINGTON CONNECTICUT 06131-7546
TRANSPORTAION COMMISSIONER ANNOUNCES VALLEY TRANSIT DISPUTE NEAR RESOLUTION
Transportation Commissioner Stephen E. Korta, II today announced that the issue with the Valley Transit District of Derby involving the District’s over-billing of the DOT will soon be resolved.
For several years, independent audits of the Valley Transit District revealed a pattern of over-billing the State for reimbursements. In October of 2004, the DOT began collection actions against the District for $200,000 of over-reimbursements. At first, the District disputed the claims. Several meetings were held with the District, their Board of Directors, and the state legislative delegation from the Valley in attempts to resolve the matter.
Subsequently, audits of the District’s budgets demonstrated the validity of the numbers and the District concurred. The Department recently requested specific financial information from the district which was provided on Tuesday, November 15, 2005. This information will allow the Department to determine the ability of the District to make an immediate cash payment and begin a schedule of repayments to the state.
“The Department of Transportation is the major financial support for public transportation services statewide and has no intent of taking any actions that would remove transit services from the people of the Valley,” Commissioner Korta said. “However, we require accountability for State funds distributed to our regional transit districts, and accountability is the issue in this case.”
Last week the Department released a partial payment to VTD to address immediate cash flow needs of the District in order for them to continue operation. “The same partial payments could be arranged again, so long as progress is made by the Valley Transit District to resolve the procedural issues that led to this over-billing,” Commissioner Korta said.
The DOT is issuing a letter to the district that will outline a payback schedule for the outstanding debt. The first payment will be determined by the financial report submitted on November 15th. The remaining schedule will divide the amount still owed into 18 payments that will be made before the close of state fiscal year 2007.