Office of Mental Health

 

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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Office of Mental Health
Selected Employee Travel Expenses


Issued: June 04, 2013
Link to full audit report 2012-S-76
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 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 as well as other outliers. As a result, we examined the travel costs of one Office employee whose expenses exceeded $100,000.  In total, we examined $121,697 in travel costs associated with this one employee.

Key Findings

  • Most of the expenses we examined were appropriate. However, we found the Office did not maintain sufficient records of the employee’s fleet vehicle usage to ensure the vehicle was used appropriately. 

Key Recommendations

  • Follow established travel fleet management guidelines to ensure adequate monitoring of fleet vehicle use to guard against fraud, waste or abuse.

Other Related Audits/Reports of Interest

Department of Taxation and Finance: Selected Employee Travel Expenses (2012-S-95)
Office of General Services: Selected Employee Travel Expenses (2012-S-92)


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