Oversight of Construction Management Contracts

Issued Date
June 24, 2021
Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, Office of 


To determine if the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation is adequately monitoring construction management contracts to ensure they meet contract terms and requirements. The audit covered the period June 29, 2017 through July 17, 2020.

About the Program

The Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (Parks) is responsible for operating and maintaining the State park, recreation, and historic site system to conserve, protect, and enhance the natural, ecological, historic, cultural, and recreational resources of New York State. This system includes 180 State parks with opportunities for hiking, camping, swimming, golfing, and snowmobiling as well as 38 historic sites. Parks oversees a range of capital projects to improve these sites. In an effort to ensure certain capital projects are executed and constructed properly, Parks occasionally contracts with firms that specialize in providing construction management (CM) services. In 2012, Parks entered into a contract with the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) to serve as the construction manager of a $25 million Niagara Falls State Park revitalization project. After five amendments, this contract has expanded to include additional projects throughout New York and is Parks’ largest CM contract. In addition to the DASNY contract, Parks enters into three-year contracts with private firms to serve as the construction manager (term contracts). Parks currently has ten active CM term contracts with private firms that total approximately $27.9 million for 58 projects.

Key Findings

  • Parks has generally established controls to ensure CM term contractors are meeting contract terms and requirements. We identified only limited instances where Parks could not provide documentation showing CM requirements were met and minor overpayments were made, for which Parks has obtained a refund from the contractor.
  • We found Parks paid over $229,000 in fees under the contract with DASNY that could have been avoided if it had used a term contract rather than the DASNY contract. The fees will continue to accrue and be paid by Parks until contract completion. Also, we found Parks officials do not receive detailed support for payments made under the DASNY contracts; therefore, they cannot monitor payments made under this contract as effectively as their other term contracts.

Key Recommendations

  • Complete new CM projects using the term contracts in place or under new term contracts, as practicable.
  • Develop and implement a process to obtain additional support to adequately monitor vouchers under the DASNY contract for accuracy, support, and project-related expenses.

Nadine Morrell

State Government Accountability Contact Information:
Audit Director
: Nadine Morrell
Phone: (518) 474-3271; Email: [email protected]
Address: Office of the State Comptroller; Division of State Government Accountability; 110 State Street, 11th Floor; Albany, NY 12236