Missouri Transportation Department officials admit they have done a poor job in communicating their success stories to the public, but they are trying to change that. In a three-hour news conference with reporters from just about every corner of the state, MoDOT Director Henry Hungerbeeler fielded questions ranging from local projects to department policy. Hungerbeeler says this event was not in response to the public lashing the Governor gave the department in September regarding MODOT’s accountability issues. Hungerbeeler admits the problem has been a failure to communicate, but it is not the fault of the Department’s communication department and that department’s Director, Rich Hood. Hood was brought in a year ago to help MoDOT’s image at a salary of nearly $100,000 a year, substantially higher than what his predecessor made. Hungerbeeler points to a report recently presented to lawmakers that shows in 2002 MoDOT completed more than 200 projects on time and within one perecent of the projected budget.
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