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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

State University of New York
System Administration Office
Selected Employee Travel Expenses


Issued: July 31, 2013
Link to full audit report 2012-S-100
Link to 90-day response

Purpose
To determine whether the use of travel monies by selected government employees complied with rules and regulations and is free from fraud, waste, and abuse. The audit covers the period April 1, 2008 to March 31, 2011.

Background
New York State's executive agencies spend between $100 million and $150 million each year on travel expenses. These expenses, which are discretionary and under the control of agency management, include car rentals, meals, lodging, transportation, fuel, and incidental costs such as airline baggage and travel agency fees. As part of a statewide audit initiative to determine whether the use of travel money by selected government employees was appropriate, we audited travel expenses for the highest-cost travelers in the State, each of whom incurred over $100,000 in travel expenses during the three year audit period, as well as other outliers. As a result of this analysis, we selected one State University of New York System Administration Office (System Administration) employee for audit whose expenses ranked among the highest in the State in the area of lodging. In total, we examined $188,074 in travel costs associated with this employee.

Key Findings

  • Most of the expenses we examined were appropriate. However, the employee selected for audit had charges totaling $5,021 that were either for non-reimbursable expenses ($200 hotel room smoking charge) or lacked adequate assurance that the charges were for the most reasonable and economical method of travel ($4,821 in car service charges).

Key Recommendation

  • Recover the $200 hotel room smoking charge from the hotel or the employee.

Other Related Audits/Reports of Interest

State University of New York College at Cobleskill – Selected Employee Travel Expenses (2012-S-143)
State University of New York College at Oneonta – Selected Employee Travel Expenses (2012-S-145)


State Government Accountability Contact Information:
Audit Director: John Buyce
Phone: (518) 474-3271; Email: StateGovernmentAccountability@osc.state.ny.us
Address: Office of the State Comptroller; Division of State Government Accountability; 110 State Street, 11th Floor; Albany, NY 12236