Bemus Point Central School District - Financial Management (2019M-216)

Issued Date
February 14, 2020

[read complete report - pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether the Board and District officials properly managed fund balance and reserves.

Key Findings

  • The Board overestimated appropriations by a total of $3.1 million from 2016-17 through 2018-19 and annually appropriated an average of $400,000 of fund balance that was not used to finance operations.
  • The District improperly restricted more than $260,000 in its trust and agency fund.
  • As of June 30, 2019, surplus fund balance totaled $708,000 and was 4.5 percent of 2019-20 appropriations, exceeding the statutory limit by approximately $74,000.

Key Recommendations

  • Adopt budgets that include reasonable estimates for appropriations and the amount of fund balance that will be used to fund operations.
  • Return the improperly restricted money to the general fund.
  • Reduce surplus fund balance to comply with the statutory limit and use the excess funds in a manner beneficial to taxpayers.

District officials generally agreed with our findings and indicated they would take corrective action. Appendix B includes our comments on issues raised in the District’s response.