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NYS Comptroller


Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Oxford Academy and Central School District – Financial Management (2016M-6)

Released: June 17, 2016 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to evaluate the District’s financial management practices for the period July 1, 2014 through November 19, 2015.


The Oxford Academy and Central School District is located in the Towns of Coventry, McDonough, Norwich, Oxford, Pharsalia, Preston and Smithville in Chenango County. The District, which operates three schools with approximately 800 students, is governed by an elected five-member Board of Education. Budgeted appropriations for the 2015-16 fiscal year total approximately $19.1 million.

Key Findings

  • The Board and District officials did not ensure that the unrestricted fund balance and the capital reserve fund balance were reasonable.
  • District officials appropriated a combined total of approximately $1.7 million of fund balance as a financing source in the annual budgets from 2011-12 through 2015-16, but the District’s operations did not always use the fund balance and instead generated operating surpluses totaling approximately $745,000 during this period.

Key Recommendations

  • Ensure the District’s unrestricted fund balance is in compliance with the statutory limits and reduce the amount of unrestricted fund balance in a manner that benefits District taxpayers.
  • Discontinue the practice of adopting budgets with appropriated fund balance that will not be used to fund operations.

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