Cheektowaga Central School District - Capital Project Management (2022M-90)

Issued Date
September 16, 2022

[read complete report – pdf]

Audit Objective

Determine whether the Cheektowaga Central School District (District) Board of Education (Board) and District officials provided sufficient oversight and managed the District’s Union East Elementary School capital project(Project) in a transparent manner.

Key Findings

The Board and District officials did not manage the Project in a transparent manner and did not provide adequate oversight.

  • The District’s Project proposition did not specify $1.9 million of additional work the District contracted for. As a result, voters were not afforded the opportunity to approve or reject the added work. Without the additional work, the Project could have been completed under budget.
  • Officials expended just over $2 million for five professional service contracts and 39 change orders without obtaining competitive pricing. As a result, the District may have paid more than if the Board and District officials had awarded the work through a competitive process.
  • The Board did not review or approve 51 change orders totaling $814,900 that increased Project costs and four change orders totaling $120,900 that reduced Project costs, and officials did not ensure change orders were submitted timely to the New York State Education Department (SED) for approval.

Key Recommendations

  • Transparently share capital project details with District voters.
  • Solicit competition through bids when required, or request quotes to provide assurance the District is receiving the lowest possible price.
  • Properly approve change orders and ensure their timely submission to SED.

District officials generally agreed with our findings and recommendations and indicated they have initiated or plan to initiate corrective action.