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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Yorkshire-Pioneer Central School District – Financial Management (2015M-352)


Released: April 15, 2016 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review the District’s management of financial activities for the period July 1, 2012 through October 13, 2015.

Background

The Yorkshire-Pioneer Central School District is located in the Towns of Arcade, Eagle, Java, Sheldon and Wethersfield in Wyoming County; Farmersville, Freedom, Machias and Yorkshire in Cattaraugus County; Holland and Sardinia in Erie County; and Centerville in Allegany County. The District, which operates four schools with approximately 2,500 students, is governed by an elected nine-member Board of Education. Budgeted appropriations for the 2015-16 fiscal year total approximately $52.8 million.

Key Findings

  • Although District officials annually appropriated a portion of fund balance, including reserve fund balance, toward subsequent years’ budgets, the full amount appropriated was not needed because the District’s budgeting practices generally resulted in operating surpluses.
  • As of June 30, 2015, unrestricted fund balance was more than 10 percent of the ensuing year’s budget, or approximately $3 million over the legal limit.
  • The District did not have a Board-adopted policy to communicate the purpose of its reserve funds, optimal funding levels and conditions under which the funds will be used or replenished.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop realistic estimates of revenues and expenditures and the use of fund balance in the annual budgets.
  • Ensure that unrestricted fund balance is in compliance with statutory limits and develop a plan to reduce unrestricted fund balance in a manner that benefits District taxpayers.
  • Develop a written reserve fund policy.

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