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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Report Highlights

Lowville Academy and Central School District - Claims Audit Process (2019M-154)

Released: September 27, 2019 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether claims were adequately documented, were for appropriate purposes and were properly audited and approved prior to payment.

Key Findings

  • Because the claims auditor was also the Athletic Director, his audit of the claims for the athletic department was not independent.
  • We reviewed 127 claims totaling almost $752,500 and found that 59 claims totaling approximately $68,000 had at least one exception, such as a lack of purchasing agent approval prior to purchase, evidence of oral quotes, departmental approval, evidence of receipt of goods or services, or itemized receipts or invoices.

Key Recommendations

  • Ensure that the claims auditor is not directly involved in the purchasing function.
  • Develop procedures to provide additional guidance on the claims auditor’s responsibilities.

District officials agreed with our recommendations and indicated they had already addressed the findings and implemented the recommendations.

Background

The Lowville Academy and Central School District (District) serves the Towns of Denmark, Greig, Harrisburg, Lowville, Martinsburg, Montague, New Bremen, Pinckney, Turin, Watson and West Turin in Lewis County.

The nine-member Board of Education (Board) is responsible for the general management and control of the District’s financial and educational affairs. The Superintendent is the District’s chief executive officer and is responsible, along with other administrative staff, for the District’s day-to-day management, under the Board’s direction. The Superintendent also serves as the purchasing agent.

The Board has delegated its claims auditing powers and duties to a claims auditor.

Quick Facts
Employees250
Enrollment1,300
2018-19 General Fund Appropriations$27.6 million
General, Special Aid, School Food Service and Capital Projects Voucher Payments for the Audit Period$9.8 million

Audit Period

July 1, 2017 – January 31, 2019


Local Government and School Accountability Contact Information:

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