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NYS Comptroller


Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Report Highlights

Laurens Central School District - Cafeteria Operations and Reserves (2018M-111)

Released: August 31, 2018 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether Laurens Central School District (District) officials:

  • Effectively managed cafeteria operations.
  • Properly managed reserves.

Key Findings

  • The school lunch fund has stabilized operating losses and reduced dependence on general fund subsidies.
  • The Board of Education (Board) has not:
    • Effectively managed reserve balances.
    • Adopted policies for general fund reserves.

Key Recommendations

  • District officials should perform a cost-per-meal analysis and continue to identify potential efficiencies that will help ensure the school lunch fund is self-sufficient.
  • The Board should:
    • Review the reserve balances and determine if the amounts are reasonable and necessary. If not, develop a plan to reduce the balances to appropriate levels.
    • Modify the guidelines for reserves to include desired balances and plans for use that are more specific to the actual needs of the District.

District officials generally agreed with our recommendations and have initiated or indicated they planned to initiate corrective action. Appendix B includes our comment on an issue that was raised in the District’s response letter.


The District serves the Towns of Laurens, Hartwick, Milford, Morris, New Lisbon and Otego in Otsego County (County).

The District is governed by the Board which is composed of five elected members. The Board is responsible for the general management and control of the District's financial and educational affairs, including budget development. The Superintendent of Schools is the chief executive officer and is responsible, along with other administrative staff, for the day-to-day management of the District under the direction of the Board. Responsibilities relating to the District’s finances and accounting records and reports are largely those of the Business Office, which consists of the District Treasurer and Deputy Treasurer.

Quick Facts
2017-18 Tax Levy $2.7 million
2017-18 Budgeted Appropriations $9.7 million
2017-18 Enrollment 317

Audit Period

July 1, 2016 through April 17, 2018. We extended our scope to July 1, 2012 to analyze trends.

Local Government and School Accountability Contact Information:

Phone: (518) 474-4037; Email:
Address: Office of the State Comptroller, Division of Local Government and School Accountability
110 State Street, 12th Floor; Albany, NY 12236