Hudson River Park Trust

 

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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Hudson River Park Trust
Selected Financial Management Practices


Issued: December 26, 2014
Link to full audit report 2013-S-56

Purpose
To determine if the Hudson River Park Trust has established adequate controls over the following financial management functions: revenue and collection; procurement and contracting; time and attendance; budgeting and expenditure control; cash investments; and equipment and asset management. The audit covered the period April 1, 2010 through March 26, 2014.

Background
The Hudson River Park Trust (Trust) is a public benefit corporation authorized under the Hudson River Park Act (Act) in 1998. The Act also created Hudson River Park (Park), which includes the area along the Hudson River waterfront, generally from the northern boundary of Battery Place to the northern boundary of 59th Street in Manhattan. The Trust has authority over the planning, construction, operation, and maintenance of the Park. Under the Act, the State and New York City granted the Trust a possessory interest in the real property that composes the Park for a term not to exceed 99 years. The Trust has a 13-member Board with members appointed by the Mayor, Governor, and the Manhattan Borough President. The Trust also has approximately 59 full-time employees and 11 part-time and seasonal workers. The Trust is financially self-sustaining. All revenues generated within the Park are used to fund the costs of maintenance and operations. The primary sources of revenues in fiscal year 2013 were leases, occupancy permit fees, revenue from the parking garage, and certain user fees.

Key Findings

  • Opportunities exist for the Trust to improve its practices related to revenue collection, procurement, investments, time and attendance, budgeting, and equipment inventories.
  • The Trust needs to improve its monitoring of payments from tenants. For three contracts, the Trust did not collect $297,925 in revenues because tenants: reduced their payments to the Trust by the amounts of maintenance costs, which were not documented; did not pay rent for a year; or paid the wrong amount of rent.
  • Two vendor contracts were awarded and modified by $16.9 million, but the documentation in support of the vendor selection and contract modification was incomplete.

Key Recommendations

  • Strengthen controls over the award of revenue contracts and the monitoring of revenues from such contracts.
  • Ensure the Trust follows its prescribed guidelines for the competitive procurement of goods and services consistently.
  • Improve budget procedures to ensure they comply with regulatory requirements for updates, quarterly reports, explanations of variances, and assessments of their propriety.

Other Related Audits/Reports of Interest

None


State Government Accountability Contact Information:
Audit Director: Carmen Maldonado
Phone: (212) 417-5200; 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