New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli today announced the following local government audits have been issued.
Auditors determined that 101 credit card purchases totaling $22,100 did not have original receipts attached to the monthly statement. In July 2019, Richard A. Lobur, a fire department member, admitted to taking almost $40,000 in grant money to use for personal expenses, pay off credit card debt and make loan payments. He pleaded guilty to theft of government money and agreed to pay $39,182.92 in restitution. The matter was referred to the Erie County District Attorney’s Officer and resulted in the arrest of three other individuals. In December 2019, one individual pleaded guilty to petit larceny while the other two pleaded to a non-criminal disposition. All three were ordered to pay restitution.
The board-adopted procurement policy does not provide a clear method for procuring professional services. Auditors found the town procured professional services from 16 providers with payments totaling $870,909 without competitive methods. In addition, the town did not obtain the required number of quotes for 34 purchases totaling $59,426; a proposal for one purchase totaling $13,404 or competitively bid three purchases totaling $911,044.
The town clerk did not deposit or remit all tax collections to the supervisor and county treasurer in a timely manner. In addition, the town clerk did not reconcile her bank account or identify errors such as duplicate tax payments received from taxpayers. Auditors found that the town clerk did not report or remit fees in a timely manner for 2018 and 2019. Auditors also determined that the board approved inappropriate or unsupported credit card charges totaling $5,759.
Real property taxes totaling $1,443,876 and clerk fees totaling $2,604 were not remitted to the supervisor or treasurer in a timely manner. Auditors found 45 real property tax receipts totaling $690,961 were deposited from two to 60 days after receipt instead of within 24 hours. In addition, there were five instances totaling $2,089 where clerk fees were not deposited within three days of when collections accumulated to more than $250.
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