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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Springs Union Free School District – Financial Condition and Leave Accruals (2014M-200)


Released: October 10, 2014 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to evaluate the District’s financial condition and examine leave accruals for the period July 1, 2012 through November 30, 2013.

Background

The Springs Union Free School District is located in the Town of East Hampton in Suffolk County. The District, which is governed by an elected five-member Board of Education, operates one school with 636 students attending kindergarten through eighth grade and pays tuition for 284 students in grades 9 through 12 who attend other school districts. Budgeted appropriations for the 2013-14 fiscal year totaled approximately $25.4 million.

Key Findings

  • Budgeted appropriations for 2011-12 and 2013-13 exceeded actual expenditures by $3.5 million.
  • The Board consistently appropriated fund balance in ensuing years’ budgets that was not used.
  • The District’s unrestricted fund balance as of June 30, 2013 was almost 15% of budgeted appropriations for 2013-14, or almost four times the 4 percent statutory limit.
  • The District’s sick leave records are not accurate and are not being periodically reconciled.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop and adopt budgets that include realistic estimates for expenditures.
  • Discontinue the practice of adopting budgets that contain appropriations of fund balance that will not be used.
  • Ensure that unrestricted fund balance amounts are within statutory limits and develop a plan to use the excess balance in a manner that benefits District taxpayers.
  • Establish and implement written procedures over the maintenance of leave time records.

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