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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Hyde Park Central School District – Financial Management Practices (2012M-172)


Released: January 25, 2013 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to evaluate the District’s financial management practices for the period July 1, 2010, through March 26, 2012. We extended our scope to 2007-08 to analyze budgeting practices, fund balance trends, and reserve account balances and to the 2011-12 fiscal year to analyze budgeting practices.

Background

The Hyde Park Central School District is located in Dutchess County and has approximately 3,800 students and 800 employees. The District is governed by the Board of Education which comprises seven elected members. The District’s budgeted expenditures for the 2011-12 fiscal year were approximately $85 million.

Key Findings

The Board and District officials did not ensure that budget estimates and reserve balances were reasonable and take corrective action to address the excessive fund balance in the general fund. In addition, the Board did not receive timely financial reports to evaluate the District’s finances.

  • During 2008-09, 2009-10 and 2010-11, the Board overestimated expenditures by approximately $1.9 million. Expenditures were overestimated by over $4 million in the 2011-12 budget.
  • The District’s tax certiorari fund was overfunded by $207,000 to $636,000 for the three fiscal years ended June 30, 2010.
  • The former Treasurer did not prepare and present monthly reports to the Board and prepare bank reconciliations in a timely manner.

Key Recommendations

  • Adopt realistic budgets using actual financial results from prior years to project expenditures. Maintain unassigned fund balance within the allowed legal limits. Develop a plan to use surplus fund balance in a manner that benefits District taxpayers.
  • Ensure that moneys deposited in a tax certiorari reserve fund are appropriately used, and do not exceed the amounts reasonably deemed necessary to pay for the cost of judgments and claims arising from the tax roll in the year the moneys are deposited.
  • Ensure the Treasurer prepares and submits monthly and quarterly reports in a timely manner. Develop written procedures requiring timely bank reconciliations to be performed on a monthly basis.

Local Government and School Accountability Contact Information:

Phone: (518) 474-4037; Email: localgov@osc.state.ny.us
Address: Office of the State Comptroller, Division of Local Government and School Accountability
110 State Street, 12th Floor; Albany, NY 12236