New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli today announced the following local government audits were issued.
The board did not effectively manage fund balance. The board also did not develop or adopt a fund balance policy that addresses what level of fund balance is needed or how any surplus funds will be used and the timeframe for doing so. In addition, the unrestricted fund balance grew to $2.4 million as of Dec. 31, 2020. Allowing $2.4 million to accumulate and sit idle without a specific purpose to benefit the town is not in the public’s best interest.
The board did not establish adequate controls over district financial activities to safeguard assets. In addition, the board did not segregate key duties or implement adequate mitigating controls. Auditors also determined the board did not contract for an independent audit of its 2019 records, as required by law, or provide for an annual audit of the treasurer’s records. As of June 30, 2020, the district’s 2017 through 2019 annual reports were between 122 and 852 days late.
The clerk properly recorded all the fees auditors reviewed and remitted all fees collected during the audit period in a timely manner. However, the clerk did not always deposit fees within the required time frame. The clerk did not deposit $5,266 in fees collected within the required time frame. In addition, the clerk did not prepare accurate bank reconciliations. The clerk also did not prepare accountability analyses. As of Oct. 30, 2020, the clerk’s bank account held an unaccounted for and unremitted cash balance of $262.
The 2021-22 budget relies on nonrecurring revenue of $55.2 million, such as fund balance, one-time state funding and the sale of property, to balance its budget. The city could face a shortfall of $1.8 million for parking violations bureau revenue and $1.3 million for parks revenue. The city plans to borrow up to $15 million for tax certiorari settlements in the 2021-22 fiscal year. In addition, firefighting overtime costs could potentially be over budget by as much as $2 million based on the 2020-21 fiscal year overtime costs. Over the last 10 years, the city’s outstanding debt has grown 9.4% and the city’s debt service payments have risen 13.2%. The city will need $80.6 million to service its debt obligations during 2021-22.
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