Following the construction industry and related legal topics in the United States.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

"Free lancing" procurement for campus construction projects may lead to criminal investigation in Maryland

State legislators in Maryland have been grilling Morgan State University officials after an audit brought the university's method of construction spending into question. As reported in the Baltimore Sun and in The Chronicle of Higher Education, the legislative audit revealed that Morgan State, which is not part of the University of Maryland system but receives state funding, "had padded a $4.3-million contract with the Whiting Turner Construction Company with a $3.1-million cushion and now cannot account for part of that money. The audit also found that Whiting Turner had been overpaid $825,250 in duplicate billings, and that two university employees had been simultaneously paid as both regular and contractual workers, resulting in overpayments of $121,400 that were not discovered for months." The university’s director of design and construction management resigned last month after auditors uncovered questionable deals made with contractors on behalf of the university. (This entry published by Liz Riley, a member of Womble Carlyle's real estate development and construction law practice groups.)


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