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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Elmira Heights Central School District – Financial Condition (2014M-76)


Released: September 19, 2014 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to evaluate the District’s financial condition for the period July 1, 2010 through February 19, 2014.

Background

The Elmira Heights Central School District is located in the village of Elmira Heights, Chemung County. The District is governed by an elected seven-member Board of Education and operates three schools, with approximately 1,100 students. Budgeted appropriations for the 2013-14 fiscal year totaled approximately $20 million.

Key Findings

  • The District’s reliance on fund balance and reserves to finance planned operating deficits has depleted available funds to dangerous levels.
  • District officials improperly transferred $150,000 from the unemployment reserve to unassigned fund balance.
  • The multiyear financial plan has not been updated since November 2012.

Key Recommendations

  • Ensure that future budgets are structurally balanced, with recurring revenues financing recurring expenditures rather than continually relying on appropriated fund balance and reserves.
  • Return funds improperly transferred from reserves and ensure that future uses of reserves conform with statutes.
  • Regularly update the multiyear financial plan.

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