New York State has issued a glowing report on the state of a local school district’s finances.
The Port Jefferson School District received a “spotless” report from the New York State Comptroller following an audit meant to examine if the school board properly managed its voucher payment system.
Audit vouchers are made on all school expenditures, where either the school board or a designated auditor looks at each claim to determine if each item complies with district policies and whether the amounts are necessary district expenditures before the cost is paid. The comptroller’s audit, which spanned from July 2016 to September 2017, stated Port Jeff’s claims audit process was “adequately designed and that it had been properly implemented.”
“This report reflects proper oversight by the board of education and the stringent controls put in place and carried out by our business office personnel,” Superintendent Paul Casciano said in a statement. “The carefully conducted examination and positive results are a testament to the district’s comprehensive policies and procedures for claims payments.”
The comptroller’s office reviewed one percent of all claims paid by the district during the span, which amounted to 60 general fund claims. These claims totaled close to $300,000, including $2,705 from 10 “extra-classroom activity” claims. The office determined Port Jeff’s system was working as intended, and that the school could support all of its expenditures.
Brian Butry, a spokesperson for the comptroller’s office, said while they don’t have specific numbers on how many schools have problems with their audit voucher systems, Port Jefferson has been more responsible than others.
“These types of audit results are not that common and, as noted in the final report, the district should be commended for their well-designed claims system,” Butry said.
The report said district officials created well working procedures to analyze extra-classroom activities such as clubs, where each has a treasurer and faculty advisor, and that payment orders were supported with fully signed invoices.
“Given that there were no negative findings indicates the district’s claims process has an overall well-designed system,” Deputy Superintendent Sean Leister said in a statement. “As our district places a strong emphasis on ensuring tax dollars are spent effectively and efficiently, we are pleased with the outcome of this auditing process, as it reinforces from an external perspective.”