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Office of the State Comptroller - Local Government & School Accountability
Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Village of Wappingers Falls – Selected Financial Activities (2012M-115)


Released: November 2, 2012 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to examine the Village’s internal controls over selected financial activities for the period June 1, 2010, through April 30, 2012.

Background

The Village of Wappingers Falls is located in the Towns of Wappingers and Poughkeepsie in Dutchess County. The Board of Trustees is the legislative body responsible for managing Village operations. The Village’s total budgeted appropriations for the 2010-11 and 2011-12 fiscal years were approximately $4.3 and $4.5 million, respectively.

Key Findings

  • Incompatible duties within the cash receipt operations were not properly segregated and effective compensating controls were not established.
  • Planning and zoning fees and escrow moneys were not deposited timely.
  • Staff at the Planning and Zoning Department did not always issue receipts in sequential order and did not always use formal, preprinted receipts.
  • The Board also did not establish an effective claims audit process.
  • The Board has not established policies and guidelines for the use of credit cards and payment of those claims.
  • The Board did not adopt guidance for assessing the IT system for vulnerabilities, disaster recovery or acceptable use. Backup data is stored onsite and vulnerable to loss if a disaster should occur at the Village Hall.

Key Recommendations

  • Segregate incompatible duties in the cash receipt function and/or oversee the function to mitigate any weaknesses in the segregation of incompatible duties.
  • Ensure that all fees collected are deposited within 10 days of receipt.
  • Institute a system that ensures receipt numbers are used sequentially and all receipts are accounted for.
  • Establish policies for the proper audit of claims.
  • Establish a credit card policy that sets the parameters for using credit cards and procedures for monitoring credit card usage.
  • Adopt a comprehensive security plan and update it when necessary. Develop a disaster recovery plan and an acceptable-use policy. Store back-up data at a secure location separate from where the original data resides.

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