The Texas Transportation Commission approved the selection of private-sector consulting firm Grant Thornton of Chicago to conduct an immediate top-down management and organizational review of the Texas Department of Transportation.

The firm will gather and analyzing information about the agency and its operations before proposing recommendations to increase productivity and cut costs.

The commission outlined goals for the agency review including optimizing the department’s performance; improving transparency and accountability; promoting the effective use of resources; and assisting in the identification of future resource needs.

The review will include surveys and interviews with TxDOT employees, as well as input from state legislators, metropolitan planning organizations, and other external stakeholders. The commission expects the consultant’s recommendations to be presented for consideration in early 2010.