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NYS Comptroller


Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Spackenkill Union Free School District – Financial Management, Transportation and Information Technology (2015M-151)

Released: October 9, 2015 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to examine the District’s financial management and its controls over transportation and information technology (IT) operations for the period July 1, 2013 through June 24, 2015.


The Spackenkill Union Free School District is located in the Town of Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County. The District, which operates four schools with approximately 1,500 students, is governed by an elected five-member Board of Education. Budgeted general fund appropriations for the 2014-15 fiscal year were approximately $42.5 million.

Key Findings

  • District officials did not ensure that budget estimates and reserves were reasonable and that fund balance was maintained in accordance with statutory requirements.
  • District officials did not implement performance measures to effectively and efficiently manage transportation costs.
  • The District’s IT acceptable use policy has not been updated and policies and procedures have not been established for computer security, disaster recovery, data backups and security awareness training.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop budget projections for appropriations that consider prior years’ financial results and develop a plan to use the surplus fund balance in a manner that benefits taxpayers.
  • Develop comprehensive performance measures to evaluate the District’s transportation operations and use these standards to improve the efficiency of operations.
  • Update the acceptable use policy to include the use of personal devices on the District’s network, ensure that all network users receive security training and create policies and procedures relating to disaster recovery and data backup.

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