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NYS Comptroller


Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Wassaic Fire District – Purchasing and Claims Processing (2017M-8)

Released: April 28, 2017 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to examine the District’s purchasing practices and claims processing for the period January 1, 2015 through September 30, 2016.


The Wassaic Fire District (District) is a district corporation of the State, distinct and separate from the Town of Amenia, in Dutchess County. The District is governed by an elected five-member Board of Fire Commissioners. General fund budgeted appropriations for 2016 totaled approximately $808,000.

Key Findings

  • District officials did not seek competition for the services of 11 professionals totaling $290,500 and did not obtain the required number of quotes for 17 purchases totaling $41,870.
  • District officials did not have written agreements with four professionals for services totaling $27,048.
  • The Board did not ensure that all claims were supported with adequate documentation, for appropriate purposes and approved prior to payment.

Key Recommendations

  • Seek competition when procuring professional services or document the rationale in instances when competition is not sought.
  • Ensure written agreements are made with professional service providers that detail the contract period, services and compensation.
  • Conduct a proper audit of claims to ensure that all vouchers are properly itemized, show evidence of department head approval and include original supporting documentation including receiving slips, vouchers and original invoices.

Local Government and School Accountability Contact Information:

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