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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Department of Taxation and Finance
Selected Employee Travel Expenses


Issued: January 10, 2013
Link to full audit report 2012-S-95

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. Three of these employees worked at the Department Taxation and Finance with outliers in the areas of train fare, fuel and other miscellaneous travel expenses. The employees travel costs totaled $91,686.

Key Findings

We found that the travel expenses for the three Department employees selected for audit were documented and adhered to State travel rules and regulations. We found minor instances of non-compliance with travel procedures (absence of original receipts) for one employee who separated from the Department in February 2011. We performed further audit testing and determined that these instances did not result in fraud, waste, or abuse and that these expenses were for legitimate business purposes.

Key Recommendation

  • None

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