Brewster-Southeast Joint Fire District - Recordkeeping and Procurement (2018M-86)

Issued Date
August 03, 2018

[read complete report - pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether:

  • District financial activities were properly recorded and reported.
  • District officials solicited competition for professional services.

Key Findings

  • Accounting records were not accurate as of December 31, 2017. Cash accounts were incorrectly recorded, the operating bank account balance was understated by more than $377,000 and the capital reserve balance was overstated by $200,790. In addition, all 45 general ledger accounts did not comply with the Office of the State Comptroller’s (OSC) uniform system of accounts for fire districts.1
  • District officials did not always solicit competition when procuring professional services.

Key Recommendations

  • Ensure that cash and other accounts are accurately reconciled and recorded in a timely manner.
  • Update financial records and reports to conform to OSC’s uniform system.
  • Ensure budgets are properly presented using OSC’s uniform system and accurate budget amounts.
  • Consider revising the procurement policy to require soliciting competition before awarding professional service contracts.

District officials disagreed with certain aspects of our findings and recommendations, but indicated that they planned to implement some of our recommendations. Appendix B includes our comments on the issues raised in the District’s response letter.

1 Refer to the Fire District Accounting and Reporting Manual.