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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Report Highlights

Town of Crown Point - Town Clerk/Tax Collector (2018M-263)

Released: July 19, 2019 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether the Town Clerk/Tax Collector (Clerk) properly accounted for fees (including campsite rentals), real property taxes and water and sewer rents.

Key Findings

The Clerk did not:

  • Remit real property taxes totaling nearly $1.4 million in 2017 and 2018 to the Town Supervisor (Supervisor) or County Treasurer (Treasurer) each week, as required by law. For example, the Clerk collected taxes totaling $951,513 during the first seven weeks of 2017 (from January 2 through February 17) but made only one remittance totaling $909,157 to the Supervisor on February 14, 2017.
  • Deposit real property tax collections within the required timeframe. For example, $468,215 or 34 percent of taxes paid by check in 2017 were deposited from eight to 38 days late.
  • Always deposit fees within the required timeframe or remit them to the Supervisor in a timely manner.

Key Recommendations

  • Remit all real property tax collections to the Supervisor and Treasurer within the required timeframe.
  • Deposit all real property tax collections within the required timeframe.
  • Deposit all fees intact within the required timeframe. Fees should be accurately remitted to the Supervisor in a timely manner.

Town officials generally agreed with our recommendations and have initiated or indicated they planned to initiate corrective action.

Background

The Town of Crown Point (Town) is located in Essex County (County). The Town is governed by an elected Town Board (Board) composed of four Board members and the Supervisor. The Board is responsible for general management and control of finances including overseeing the Clerk’s financial activities.

The elected Clerk collects fees for birth and death certificates, marriage licenses, building permits, dog licenses and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) licenses, campsite fees, and water and sewer rents. Serving as the elected Tax Collector, the Clerk is responsible for collecting Town and County real property taxes and remitting taxes collected to the Supervisor or Treasurer.

Quick Facts
Population2,024
2018 Real Property Taxes$1.4 million
Clerk Fees Collected During the Audit Period$97,920
Water/Sewer Rents Collected During the Audit Period$331,794

Audit Period

January 1, 2017 - June 26, 2018


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