New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli today announced his office completed audits of the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown Central School District, Candor Central School District, Lowville Academy and Central School District and the Westhampton Beach Union Free School District.
“In an era of limited resources and increased accountability, it’s critical that schools make every dollar count,” DiNapoli said. “By auditing school district and charter school finances and operations, my office continues to provide taxpayers the assurance that their money is being spent appropriately and effectively.”
Over the last four fiscal years, the district spent nearly $3 million less than planned and only used $1.5 million of the appropriated fund balance that was budgeted to finance operations. As a result, the district’s year-end unrestricted fund balance as a percentage of the next year’s budgetary appropriations averaged about 41 percent over the last four years, which is more than 10 times the statutory limit.
The district is serving nutritious meals to its students, however, the meals cost more to prepare than the revenue generated by the meal sales. The district reported deficits in its school lunch fund totaling more than $230,000 over the last three fiscal years.
Over the last four years, district officials have overestimated expenditures and used very little of the revenue from the districts’ wind power agreement to reduce real property taxes even though that agreement has generated more than $32 million since 2006-07.
District officials have established adequate controls over the claims processing function that ensure claims are audited in a timely manner, properly supported and for legitimate district purposes.
For access to state and local government spending and nearly 50,000 state contracts, visit OpenBookNY. The easy-to-use website was created by Comptroller DiNapoli to promote openness in government and provide taxpayers with better access to the financial workings of government.