Report 2011-116.2 Recommendation 6 Responses

Report 2011-116.2: Department of General Services: Strengthening the Division of the State Architect's Workload Management and Performance Measurements Could Help It Avoid Delays in Processing Future Increases in Workload (Release Date: May 2012)

Recommendation #6 To: General Services, Department of

To appropriately oversee changes to approved plans, the division should develop policies and procedures to ensure that it receives all relevant plan changes.

Agency Response*

In previous status reports, DSA noted that regulatory and procedural changes had been made that result in a more simplified and streamlined process for approving construction change documents. The regulations no longer refer to change orders or field changes whose tracking led to some of the concerns developed by the State Auditor. Instead, they require design professionals to submit all construction change documents related to the structural safety, access compliance, or fire and life safety portions of the project for division review and approval.

As noted in DGS' updates to BSA Report No. 2011-116.1 which focused on DSA's construction oversight and project close-out functions, DSA has taken numerous actions to ensure that adequate oversight is performed of project inspectors during construction. These actions include initiating a training program that focuses on ensuring that consistent construction oversight is being provided by its field engineers, including actively monitoring that construction is only conducted in accordance with approved construction documents. The training contained modules that address overseeing project inspector performance and record keeping during construction. The training sessions were conducted in August 2012, November 2012 and February 2013.

Recently, DSA also implemented a system that allows project architects/engineers to submit construction change documents electronically by establishing folders within DSAbox (DSA's cloud based internet solution). This system will assist in ensuring the timely submittal of plan changes for approval.

  • Response Type†: Annual Follow Up
  • Completion Date: October 2013
  • Response Date: October 2013

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Fully Implemented

The division provided evidence that it trained staff in monitoring construction and specifically in monitoring project inspectors. Additionally, the division's site visit process includes a job file review. The checklist includes a review of addenda and change orders. While this control addresses our recommendation, we did not conduct a follow-up to test implementation of this control.


Agency Response*

DSA has made changes to its regulations that result in a more simplified and streamlined process for approving construction change documents. The regulations no longer refer to "change orders" or "field changes" whose tracking led to some of the concerns developed by the BSA. Instead, they require design professionals to submit all "construction change documents" related to the structural safety, access compliance, or fire and life safety portions of the project for division review and approval.

  • Response Type†: 1-Year
  • Response Date: May 2013

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Partially Implemented

The division issued a revised interpretation of its regulations regarding construction changes. That interpretation outlines a process for design professionals to submit certain construction changes to the division for approval prior to the start of construction. Further, a division policy states that the project inspector must monitor changes and report those that require division approval. However, the interpretation did not describe how the division intends to ensure it receives all relevant construction changes. According to the division, it is implementing a process for electronic submittal of construction change documents that will allow all involved parties access to information on the project. Additionally, the division stated it is implementing a process to audit project inspector records; however, as of September 2013 the division has not provided evidence that it has completed these steps.


Agency Response*

The division issued a revised interpretation of its regulations regarding construction changes. That interpretation outlined a process for design professionals to submit certain construction changes to the division for approval prior to the start of construction. However, the interpretation did not describe how the division intends to ensure it receives all relevant construction changes. According to the division, it is implementing a process for electronic submittal of construction change documents that will allow all involved parties access to information on the project. Additionally, the division states it is implementing a process to audit project inspector records, in part to ensure the division has received all construction changes requiring approval. (See 2013-406, p. 47)

  • Response Type†: 6-Month
  • Response Date: December 2012

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Partially Implemented


All Recommendations in 2011-116.2

†Response Type refers to the interval in which the auditee is providing the State Auditor with their status in implementing recommendations made in an audit report. Auditees must submit a response regarding their progress in implementing recommendations from our reports at three intervals from the release of the report: 60 days, six months, and one year or subsequent to one year.

*Agency responses received after June 2013 are posted verbatim.


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