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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Village of Solvay – Financial Management and Internal Controls Over the Claims Audit Process (2012M-174)


Released: December 21, 2012 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to assess the Board’s system of internal controls over selected financial operations for the period June 1, 2010, to December 31, 2011.

Background

The Village of Solvay is located in Onondaga County and has approximately 6,600 residents. The Village is governed by an elected Board of Trustees comprising a Mayor and six Trustees. General fund operating expenditures for the 2010-11 fiscal year were approximately $5.6 million.

Key Findings

  • Due to a lack of policies and procedures, as well as a lack of long-term financial planning, the Village’s unexpended surplus funds have declined to dangerously low levels. The Village had a deficit fund balance in the general fund at June 1, 2010. While the general fund balance has increased over the last few years, it is still very low, leaving an inadequate cushion for unforeseen financial circumstances. At May 31, 2012, the general fund’s unexpended surplus was only $9,112, less than 1 percent of the 2012-13 budget.
  • The Board has not established policies and procedures to guide claims processing.

Key Recommendations

  • Ensure the Village maintains a reasonable amount of fund balance in the general fund to meet its future needs. Create and routinely update a multi-year financial plan to provide a framework for preparing future budgets and managing the Village’s financial operations.
  • Establish and adopt comprehensive policies and procedures for auditing Village claims.

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