August 12, 2010
DiNapoli's Office Completes Audit of Town of Philipstown
An audit by New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli found that the Town of Philipstown has experienced significant fiscal stress and deterioration in its financial condition.
“My office’s audits of local governments improve their financial management practices,” DiNapoli said. “These audits are tools for local officials to make sure proper policies and procedures are in place to protect taxpayer dollars and provide the best possible service these taxpayer dollars can deliver. It’s clear that the Town of Philipstown needs to make some changes to prevent further deterioration of its financial condition.”
DiNapoli’s auditors noted that over the last three years, the general fund balance has declined by $247,410 to a deficit fund balance of $9,404, as of Dec. 31, 2009. In addition, the town-outside-village highway fund has experienced an unplanned operating deficit of $39,000 in 2009, which caused a decline in fund balance to $124,240.
However, because the board appropriated $155,000 of fund balance in the 2010 budget, this will create a potential deficit of $30,760 in the town-outside-village highway fund for the 2010 fiscal year. These deficiencies were caused by the board’s failure to ensure that budgets were realistic and properly monitored.
Despite the declining fund balances, the board failed to develop a comprehensive financial plan to restore the town’s fiscal standing. As a result, the town’s financial condition is likely to continue to deteriorate, which will limit the ability of town officials maintain adequate services and to manage emergencies and other unanticipated occurrences.
A full copy of the audit can be found here: http://www.osc.state.ny.us/localgov/audits/towns/2010/philipstown.pdf