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Office of the State Comptroller - Local Government & School Accountability
Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Town of Richmond – Water Accountability (2012M-103)


Released: November 9, 2012 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review the Town's water operations for the period January 1, 2009, through April 12, 2012.

Background

The Town of Richmond is located in Ontario County. The Town is governed by the Town Board which comprises four elected members and an elected Town Supervisor. For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2011, operating expenditures totaled $1.1 million for the general fund, $1.2 million for the highway fund, and $386,000 for the water fund.

Key Finding

  • The Town does not have procedures to reconcile the total amount of water purchased to the amount of water billed. Town officials did not maintain records of gallons unbilled but used for valid municipal purposes to track the amount of unaccounted-for water used by the Town. As a result, during the three-year period reviewed, water losses in excess of the 10 percent allowed by the EPA were approximately 52.7 million gallons. Using the average annual water rate paid to the City, we estimate the cost associated with this water loss is approximately $75,000.

Key Recommendation

  • Properly reconcile the amount of water purchased with the amount of water billed and used for municipal purposes and investigate and resolve significant variances. Develop a plan to find and repair leaks in the system.

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