External audit: Mattituck-Cutchogue UFSD ‘in compliance’

10/18/2014 12:00 PM |
Jeffrey Davoli, a certified public accountant with Albrecht, Viggiano, Zureck & Co. in Happauge, said Thursday the Mattituck-Cutchogue School District demonstrated 96.4 percent accuracy in preparing financial statements. (Rachel Young photo)

Jeffrey Davoli, a certified public accountant with Albrecht, Viggiano, Zureck & Co. in Happauge, said Thursday the Mattituck-Cutchogue School District demonstrated 96.4 percent accuracy in preparing financial statements. (Rachel Young photo)

The Mattituck-Cutchogue School District’s expenses were 96.4 percent in line with its projections for the 2013-14 school year, an external auditor told district school board members at their regular meeting Thursday.

Jeffrey Davoli, a certified professional accountant with Albrecht, Viggiano, Zureck & Co. in Hauppauge, said during a presentation that the district’s financial statements from the past year had been “fairly presented.”

Mr. Davoli added that the district, whose external audit ended June 30, “was in compliance” for the 2013-14 school year from a fund balance standpoint.

“You’ve been able to keep the tax levy within the 2 percent law,” he said. “There are reserves — reserves are there for a reason, for rainy days. I think your spending plan — and this is my opinion — your spending is pretty close to your budget.”

The district adopted a $38.85 million budget for the 2013-14 school year.

According to Mr. Davoli, the district’s expenses “across all programs and functions” were $39.3 million this year as opposed to $39.2 million last year.

In addition, the district had a general fund balance of $9.3 million at the end of the 2013-14 school year compared to an $8.9 million balance at the end of the 2012-13 school year. It currently has $5 million in reserves, a figure state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s office called “excessive” in January, creating an undue burden on taxpayers.

The district’s unassigned fund balance was $1.6 million this year, which Mr. Davoli said represents four percent of the 2015 spending budget — a figure he said is “in accordance with the New York State property tax law.”

Also during Thursday’s meeting, board members approved scheduling a public hearing to discuss a tax exemption for veterans on Thursday, Nov. 20, at 7 p.m. The hearing will take place just prior to the district’s next school board meeting at 7:30 p.m. While the BOE discussed the exemption earlier this year, it did not pass it for the 2014-2015 school year.

Mattituck-Cutchogue board members have until the beginning of March to decide whether to approve the exemption, which would extend property tax benefits to veterans living in the district who served during wartime.

Trustees Jeff Smith and Laura Jens-Smith were absent from Thursday’s meeting.

Note: A previous version of this story stated the public hearing for the veteran tax exemption would take place Nov. 30. It will actually take place Nov. 20.

ryoung@timesreview.com

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