Rombout Fire District – Board Oversight of Financial Activities (2017M-88)

Issued Date
July 28, 2017

Purpose of Audit

The purpose of our audit was to examine the District’s internal controls over financial operations for the period January 1, 2015 through September 8, 2016.


The Rombout Fire District is a district corporation of the State, distinct and separate from the Town of Fishkill, in Dutchess County. The District is governed by an elected five-member Board of Fire Commissioners. General fund budgeted appropriations for the 2017 total approximately $1.1 million.

Key Findings

  • The Board engaged professional service providers for managing various facets of the District’s Length of Service Award Program (LOSAP) without first soliciting competition or entering into written contracts with them.
  • The Board designated a financial advisor to act as custodian of the District’s funds, instead of a bank or trust company as required by General Municipal Law.
  • The Board borrowed $100,000 each year from District reserve funds to fund operating expenses, which is not in compliance with the law.
  • The Board has not adopted an online banking policy that defines the process for authorizing, processing and monitoring transactions.

Key Recommendations

  • Consult the District’s attorney to evaluate the present LOSAP program and related documents. The Board also should adopt a plan and trust document, engage an actuary and enter into contracts with each service provider for the LOSAP.
  • Enter into a new custodial agreement to include only bank and trust companies.
  • Cease the practice of borrowing from the capital reserve accounts for operating expenses.
  • Develop and adopt an online banking policy and entering into a comprehensive online banking agreement with the depository.