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Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Town of Galway – Financial Operations (2011M-223)


Released: April 6, 2012 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review the Town's budgeting practices and financial condition for the period January 1, 2008, to March 30, 2011.

Background

The Town of Galway is located in western Saratoga County. The Town Board which comprises five elected members – the Town Supervisor and four Board members – governs the Town. In 2010, the Town had operating expenses of $1.67 million and in 2011 the Town's adopted budget contained total appropriations of $1.79 million.

Key Findings

  • The Board did not properly allocate sales tax revenue.
  • The Board did not adopt structurally balanced budgets. Instead, the Town routinely relied heavily on appropriating unreserved fund balance to finance operations in its general and highway funds. As a result, three operating funds incurred budgetary deficits for various years.

Key Recommendations

  • Adopt budgets which include the equitable allocation of sales tax revenues and provide for the payment of prior years inequitable allocations.
  • Adopt a budgeting policy which requires reasonable, structurally balanced budgets to be adopted and periodic monitoring of operations and cash flow. Prepare year-end fund balance projections to determine what amounts of fund balance will be available for appropriation in the ensuing year's budget and be sure to appropriate no more fund balance than what is available.

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