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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

City of Glens Falls – Financial Condition (2013M-150)


Released: August 2, 2013 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review the City’s financial operations for the period January 1, 2010, to December 31, 2012.

Background

The City of Glens Falls is located in Warren County and has approximately 14,700 residents. The City is governed by the City Council which comprises an elected Mayor and six elected councilpersons - five representing each of the City wards, and one councilman-at-large. The City’s budgeted general fund appropriations for the 2013 fiscal year are approximately $16.7 million. The City’s budgeted water and sewer fund appropriations for the 2013 fiscal year were approximately $3.2 million and $5.6 million respectively.

Key Findings

  • The Council adopts realistic budgets, and along with Mayor and City Controller, continually monitors the budgets throughout the year and will initiate and approve any necessary budget amendments.
  • Although we do not consider the City to be in fiscal stress at this time, the low levels of unexpended surplus funds in the general fund and declining balances in the water and sewer make the City at risk of becoming susceptible to fiscal stress if the declining trends are allowed to continue. City officials are aware of the low level of fund balance in the general fund and the declining balances in the water and sewer funds. The budget is continually monitored throughout the year and budget amendments are made to address the changing needs of each fund.
  • Officials are working along with a management company to ensure the Center is an active venue that attracts visitors to the City.

Key Recommendations

  • Closely monitor the level of unexpended surplus funds in the general fund and continue to ensure that budgets are structurally balanced without using unexpended surplus funds.
  • Address the declining fund balances in both the water and sewer funds and adopt future budgets with less dependence on the use of unexpended surplus funds.
  • Continue to closely monitor the Center’s operations to ensure it continues to generate sufficient revenues without additional contributions from the general fund.

Local Government and School Accountability Contact Information:

Phone: (518) 474-4037; Email: localgov@osc.state.ny.us
Address: Office of the State Comptroller, Division of Local Government and School Accountability
110 State Street, 12th Floor; Albany, NY 12236