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NYS Comptroller


Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Royalton-Hartland Central School District – Financial Condition (2015M-275)

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

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to examine the District’s financial condition and budgeting practices for the period July 1, 2012 through September 4, 2015.


The Royalton-Hartland Central School District is located in the Towns of Royalton, Hartland and Lockport in Niagara County, the Town of Alabama in Genesee County and the Towns of Ridgeway and Shelby in Orleans County. The District, which operates three schools with approximately 1,400 students, is governed by an elected seven-member Board of Education. Budgeted appropriations for the 2015-16 fiscal year total approximately $22.9 million.

Key Findings

  • District officials consistently overestimated appropriations, resulting in operating surpluses.
  • The District’s unrestricted fund balance consistently exceeded statutory limits.
  • District officials consistently budgeted in the general fund for expenditures that could have been paid for with reserve funds.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop realistic estimates of appropriations and the use of fund balance in the annual budget.
  • Develop a plan to use the excess unrestricted fund balance in a manner that benefits taxpayers.
  • Develop a written policy indicating how much money will be reserved, how each reserve will be funded and when the balances will be used to finance related costs.

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