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March 9, 2010

DiNapoli: Roosevelt UFSD
Budget Picture Continues to Improve

Comptroller Releases Latest Budget Monitoring Report

The Roosevelt Union Free School District could end its fiscal year with a surplus of about $993,000 instead of the $2.5 million operating deficit the district planned in its budget, according to a review released by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. DiNapoli’s audit also found that the district’s general fund balance increased from a deficit of $7.9 million as of June 2007 to approximately $20 million by the end of June 2009. DiNapoli attributed this development to an additional $14 million in special state aid, tighter spending constraints by the district and ongoing monitoring by his office.

“Roosevelt officials have made a lot of smart decisions to get the district back on its feet,” said DiNapoli. “There are still areas in need of improvement, but this is remarkable progress.”

DiNapoli’s latest report focuses on revenue and expenditure transactions for the district’s 2009-10 second quarter, between October and December 2009.

DiNapoli said despite the overall improvement, the district had mistakenly spent or encumbered against budget lines with no or insufficient appropriations. As a result, certain district account codes appear to be over-expended by approximately $1.8 million. Additionally, district officials over-expended several special aid fund account codes by $2.3 million, making it difficult for the district to properly monitor budget line account activity.

Moreover, district officials need to earmark and amend their 2009-10 budget to integrate $1.04 million in unspent Academic Improvement Grant (AIG) funds. District officials must ensure the money is used to enhance academic programs.

DiNapoli recommended that district officials:

  • Make necessary budgetary transfers of appropriations to accounts that are over-expended. In the future, appropriations should be available before funds are encumbered or expended; and
  • Continue to ensure that AIG funds are used for their intended purposes, include the $1.04 million encumbrances in the District’s budget and earmark these moneys for specific purposes.

In response to the district’s fiscal problems and deficits, in March 2007, DiNapoli initiated real-time fiscal monitoring to ensure the district would not over-expend its budget. DiNapoli’s auditors have been continuing real-time fiscal monitoring through to the 2009-10 fiscal year.

Click here for a copy of the review.


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