A recent editorial said the report of a citizen advisory panel reviewing the Missouri Department of Transportation is "an excellent starting point." I hope you're right. As MoDOT's director, I agree that we've got to study the report carefully, fix what we can and move forward to address our state's transportation needs.
But some of your points in the editorial were incorrect or misleading, so I'd like to clarify a few things.
* The panel didn't say management "needs to go." It recommended reorganizing.
* The panel didn't recommend an apology for "lying" about the 1992 15-year transportation plan. It suggested acknowledging that the decision to suspend the plan was a mistake that will not be repeated.
* Voters did not approve the 1992 plan. The legislature approved it.
* You said the decision to suspend the plan "was never explained." In fact it was explained in great detail. Visit MoDOT's website at www.modot.org/pdf/newsandinfo/15yrplan.p... to see the detailed explanation we issued when the decision was made in 1998.
There's certainly room for MoDOT to improve, as the report pointed out. But making the agency sound much worse than it actually is will only make progress more difficult.
Henry Hungerbeeler, director