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Capital Project Monitoring... Commentary on the GFOA Best Practices

Part 5: Regularly Monitor Capital Projects' Financial and Project Activity Information

This is the fifth article in a seven part series of our commentary on the GFOA recommended practices for Capital Project Monitoring and Reporting.  We have found that the structure of Capital Budgets and Capital Improvement Plans are highly evolved and visible for many jurisdictions.  However project status is less structured and less standardized

Report on Project Status and Activities.


Producing project status reports will help officials make informed decisions regarding scheduling and cost. (In establishing report content and frequency it is important for officials to keep in mind that high profile projects often require more extensive reporting of activity compared to a jurisdiction’s more routine capital projects.) It is important to be consistent and use plain language when compiling information from various sources and reporting it to multiple stakeholders. Meaningful reports should provide straightforward project information for executive leadership and internal staff as well as citizens and the media, and, at minimum:


  • Provide a comparison of actual results to the project plan, including:
    • Percent of project completed
    • Percent of project budget expended
    • Progress on key project milestones
    • Contract status information
    • Revenue and expenditure activity
    • Cash flow and investment maturities
    • Funding commitments
    • Available appropriation
    • Comparison of results in relation to established performance measures
  • Highlight significant changes to project scope or costs


GFOA Recommended Practice: Capital Project Monitoring and Reporting (2007) (CEDCP) October 19, 2007

Our commentary on this section will focus on three areas of interest:

  1. Earned Value
  2. Website project status
  3. Issue Management

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