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NYS Comptroller


Audits of Local Governments and School Districts

Alden Central School District – Financial Management (2016M-372)

Released: February 24, 2017 -- [read complete report - pdf]

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to review the District’s financial management practices for the period July 1, 2012 through September 2, 2016.


The Alden Central School District (District) is located in the Towns of Alden, Lancaster, Marilla and Newstead in Erie County; the Town of Darien in Genesee County; and the Town of Bennington in Wyoming County. The District, which operates four schools with approximately 1,690 students, is governed by an elected seven-member Board of Education. General fund budgeted appropriations for the 2016-17 fiscal year totaled approximately $33.9 million.

Key Findings

  • The Board and District officials did not prepare accurate budgets for the 2012-13 through 2015-16 fiscal years as appropriations were overestimated by an average of $5.5 million per year, or 15.8 percent.
  • The employee benefit accrued liability reserve, the unemployment insurance reserve and the insurance reserve are overfunded.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop realistic estimates of appropriations and use of fund balance in the annual budget.
  • Review all reserves at least annually to determine if the amounts reserved are necessary and reasonable, and use the excess amounts in accordance with applicable statutory provisions in a manner that benefits residents.

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