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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 Walton – Financial Operations (2012M-156)


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

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review the Village’s financial operations for the period June 1, 2010, through February 22, 2012.

Background

The Village of Walton is located in the Town of Walton, Delaware County, and has 3,088 residents. The Village is governed by a Board of Trustees, comprising five elected members including the Mayor. The Village’s annual budget for the 2011-12 fiscal year was $4.5 million.

Key Findings

  • The Mayor and Board did not ensure that the Clerk-Treasurer maintained accurate accounting records and therefore did not have the reports needed to determine the financial position of the Village, the amount of cash available to fund operations, and the amount owed to and by the Village.
  • Due to the lack of Board oversight, there is no assurance that all money received by the Village is deposited and properly recorded, that disbursements are made for only proper Village purposes, and that purchases are necessary.
  • The Board also did not provide the Clerk-Treasurer with sufficient guidance for compiling budget estimates for fiscal year 2012-13, thereby delaying the adoption of the budget until after the start of the fiscal year and precluding a public hearing.
  • The Board did not ensure that the Clerk-Treasurer filed the Village’s annual financial report for the 2010-11 fiscal year with OSC, and it has yet to provide for an audit of financial activity for 2010-11 and 2011-12.

Key Recommendations

  • Require that the Clerk-Treasurer accurately record all the Village’s financial transactions in a timely manner and provide periodic budget-to-actual reports for each operating fund to the Board.
  • Verify that cash is recorded accurately by ensuring that the accounting records are reconciled with the cash balances per the Village bank statements. Require that both the Clerk-Treasurer and the Mayor sign all disbursement checks. Audit and approve all claims prior to their payment.
  • Adopt a budget according to the required timelines and monitor actual revenues and expenditures to prevent the over-expenditure of budget appropriations.
  • Prepare and file an annual financial report with OSC in a timely manner. Audit, or provide for an audit, of the Clerk-Treasurer’s financial records and reports on an annual basis.

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