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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts


Rockland Board of Cooperative Educational Services – Administrator Compensation, Financial Management and Purchasing (2017M-60)


Released: December 15, 2017 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review administrative compensation, purchasing and financial management practices for the period July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2015.

Background

The Rockland Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) is a public entity serving eight component school districts that educate approximately 41,000 students in Rockland County. BOCES is governed by a nine-member Board of Education elected by the boards of the component districts. Budgeted appropriations for the 2015-16 fiscal year totaled approximately $103.7 million.

Key Findings

  • By creating the position of Chief Operating Officer/Deputy Superintendent and then hiring a new District Superintendent, BOCES incurred total additional costs of approximately $69,000.
  • BOCES has more than $14.6 million in restricted funds that should have been returned to component districts.
  • The Board has not adopted a written policy that addresses procedures for billing and collection.
  • The Board and Superintendent incurred $70,290 in travel-related costs in fiscal years 2013-14 and 2014-15 which are questionable as to whether they were for legitimate and necessary purposes.

Key Recommendations

  • Prepare a cost-benefit analysis to determine whether adding the position of Chief Operating Officer/Deputy Superintendent is economical and beneficial for component district residents.
  • Ensure that all surplus funds, except those properly restricted in reserve funds or budgeted for and approved in the capital budget, are distributed back to the districts each fiscal year.
  • Adopt a comprehensive policy that specifically addresses the procedures for billing and collection when invoices remain uncollected after the payment period.
  • Ensure that all travel by the Board and the District Superintendent is transparently and appropriately approved in accordance with General Municipal Law and BOCES policies.

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