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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Vestal Central School District – Financial Condition (2014M-08)


Released: April 11, 2014 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to assess whether the Board and District officials developed reasonable budgets for the period July 1, 2012 through October 17, 2013.

Background

The Vestal Central School District is located in the Towns of Vestal and Binghamton in Broome County and in the Town of Owego in Tioga County. The District is governed by the Board of Education which comprises nine elected members. The District’s general fund budgeted appropriations for the 2013-14 fiscal year are $73.4 million.

Key Findings

  • The Board and District officials did not develop reasonable budgets. Revenue estimates were generally close to the actual revenues received. However, over the last five fiscal years, the District’s general fund spent $21.7 million less than planned. As a result of these budgetary surpluses, the District did not use any of the appropriated fund balance planned to finance operations.
  • Although the Board and administration did present to the public the financial information required by law, they did not include actual historical expenditures as compared to the proposed budget for the District taxpayers’ consideration.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop and adopt budgets that include reasonable estimates for expenditures and the use of unexpended surplus funds and discontinue the practice of adopting budgets that result in appropriating unexpended surplus funds that will not be used to sustain District operations.
  • Consider providing District taxpayers with budgetary information that includes prior fiscal years’ actual expenditures as compared to the budgets of those same years.

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