RTA performs well in 15-year state audit

Once again, the Regional Transportation Authority has successfully demonstrated it has met its statutory and fiduciary responsibilities to the voters, pursuant to a legislatively mandated 15-year independent audit.

The audit affirmed that RTA plan projects were completed as planned and realized many accomplishments. Of the 51 RTA plan projects (plan segments) envisioned in 2006, 45 improvements — or 88% — were completed or were in progress as of June 30, 2021.

The remaining projects are scheduled to be started within the remaining RTA plan timeframe as promised to the voters. The current plan is effective through June 2026.

The audit recommends the RTA:

  • requires member jurisdictions to submit complete capital project cost estimate updates and actual expenditure data (regional and local sources) on an annual or as-needed basis with the RTA monitoring and summarizing the revised cost estimates in addition to all available funding sources to pay for project costs to assist with gap analysis.
  • works with local jurisdictions to secure needed non-RTA funding for RTA plan projects before and after the end of the RTA plan.

“We agree with the recommendations of the auditors,” said RTA Executive Director Farhad Moghimi. “This audit process further validates the value that the RTA brings to regional collaboration to meet voter expectations.”

RTA Board Chair Peter Yucupicio, Chairman of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe, lauded the audit findings.

“The most important responsibilities of public servants are fulfilling our fiduciary commitments to the public and delivering on promises made to the voters. The RTA has proven time and time again that it is a well-managed and trusted organization,” Yucupicio said.

The audit was performed by the Office of the Arizona Auditor General. Ten-year and 15-year performance audits were built into the RTA’s duties, as outlined in Arizona Revised Statutes 41- 1279.03. The RTA’s governing responsibilities are outlined in A.R.S. 48-5301 through 48-5354.

The RTA is an independent special-taxing authority established in Pima County under state law. RTA sales tax revenues collected are restricted for use on voter-approved project scopes and eligible expenses as outlined in the RTA plan.

The audit team reaffirmed that the local entities managing the design and construction of the RTA plan projects under intergovernmental agreements with the RTA are responsible for providing local funding for project costs over the amount made available in the RTA agreements to complete the remaining RTA projects.

The full report can be found here: RTA 15-year performance audit.