The North Carolina Department of Administration’s Motor Fleet Management (MFM) Division should more closely coordinate policy, administer rules, and provide oversight of the state’s 7,700 passenger vehicles, according to recommendations from the state auditor.
The fleet division did not provide oversight because it did not interpret state statute as requiring it to manage and monitor all permanently assigned state-owned vehicles. MFM said its responsibility is solely to process paperwork for vehicle assignments and to transfer vehicles. However, the audit claims that state statute allows MFM to delegate enforcement of rules to agencies, but MFM still has the responsibility to provide oversight for the enforcement of those delegated rules.
The state owns approximately $63 million worth of permanently assigned vehicles. Inadequate oversight increases the risk for vehicle misuse, according to the audit.
A sample review of 44 state agencies found that 17% of them did not have policies and procedures that conformed to MFM vehicle assignment and use policies. Additionally, some vehicle assignment records were inaccurate, and vehicles were assigned to unlicensed drivers and drivers no longer employed by the state. Finally, investigations also found vehicle misuse, including unauthorized commuting.
MFM agreed with the finding and has, among other changes, begun implementing best practices in motoring agency compliance with rules and delegated duties.
The audit also looked at underutilization and mileage reimbursement. MFM stated that it has begun implementing new policies for monitoring vehicle mileage and ensure agencies meet the 12,600-mile annual threshold, except for exempt vehicles and circumstances. As for reimbursements, MFM has adopted reimbursement rates and will provide every agency and commuter easy access to the current policy, rules, and rates.
The full audit can be found here.