The SAO revealed that the cycling infrastructure construction was not well coordinated
Press Release – March 12, 2012
The Supreme Audit Office (SAO) performed and audit of funds earmarked for the construction and maintenance of the cycling infrastructure and aimed at the provision, drawdown, and use of the funds provided from the state budget and EU. The SAO scrutinised management of EU funds provided in the frame of five regional operational programmes and Operational Programme Prague – Competitiveness.
The responsibility of the managing authorities (i. e. regional councils in case of regional operational programmes and the City of Prague in case of the Operational Programme Prague – Competitiveness) was to prepare and implement the operational programmes. The audit revealed the following shortcomings:
- Definitions of eligible expenditure for individual sources had different extents and included different conditions. That makes it much more complicated to compare them and monitor them in terms of effectiveness, efficiency and economy.
- No unanimous indicators that would make it possible to measure and compare the outputs, outcomes, and impacts of the executed projects were set.
- The regional councils and the City of Prague did not set an assessment system, which would guarantee that overvalued or uneconomical projects were identified and rejected. As a rule the councils only dealt with the economy and effectiveness of projects in the form of an expert’s assessment of the projects during their preparation. Satisfaction of the initial preconditions of the expert assessments and cost-benefit analyses, which were a required adjunct to the applications, was subsequently not systematically monitored or assessed.
- Providers as well as beneficiaries paid attention to the assessment of the effectiveness and efficiency of projects either only formally or not at all; the need for projects was often justified by socio-economic benefits but not backed up with evidence; it was not possible to make objective comparisons of the efficiency of individual projects.
The SAO concluded that managing authorities of regional operational programmes and Operational Programme Prague – Competitiveness had not proceeded in a coordinated way when preparing and implementing operational programmes for the construction and maintenance of the cycling infrastructure.
The auditing operation was performed from June 2011 to December 2011. The audited period extended from 2007 till the completion of the auditing operation; where relevant, data from the previous period were also scrutinized. Audited bodies were the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of Regional Development, the State Fund for Transport Infrastructure, the City of Prague, five regional councils, and thirteen beneficiaries. The auditing operation was included into 2011 Audit Plan of the SAO under No. 11/14. Karel Sehoř, Member of the SAO Board, managed the operation and prepared the audit conclusion as well.
Supreme Audit Office