This annual report highlights major issues facing local governments, building upon the studies and audits from the Division, which are increasingly directed at issues of statewide or regional concern, such as smart growth or the empire zones program.
Local Government Publications
Search Audits for reports on municipalities and school districts dating back to 2014.
September 2004 –
September 2004 –
The purpose of this bulletin is to inform local government officials of the establishment of new revenue and appropriation codes to account for and report homeland security aid and related expenditures.
May 2004 –
This paper is intended to help stimulate a vigorous debate on smart growth in New York State by providing a general background and helping to define major issues. New York has a unique urban and natural heritage, and a rich diversity of communities, many of which need to be brought back to a healthy condition. These resources need to be conserved and developed wisely, in an economically sustainable and environmentally sound manner.
January 2004 –
This bulletin discusses the importance of conducting internal audits of cash collection activities and provides guidance for their successful completion. It is intended primarily for towns and villages, but could be utilized by other local governments.
November 2003 –
This report provides a summary of the Division’s activities and gives an overview of local government finances in New York State.
April 2003 –
A recurring issue that some of our audits have found within the past few years is that some municipalities do not perform routine bank reconciliations. This technical assistance bulletin is provided to stress the importance of bank reconciliations and provide guidance for successfully completing one.
January 2003 –
This report seeks to accomplish four important tasks:
• Reviews pertinent policy issues
• Assesses current activity levels in New York State
• Offers strategies for collaboration
• Proposes fiscally responsible measures
Finally, the report offers several policy recommendations intended to further enable local government collaboration.
July 2002 –
This bulletin explains revenue account code changes related to Child Welfare Funding in the 2002-03 State Budget.
June 2002 –
The objective of the project was to provide a financial reporting model that provides users of financial statements with information which will enhance their understanding of governmental operations and ultimately result in an increased accountability by the governmental units.
June 2002 –
This bulletin explains the reporting requirements for advance refunding bonds. Many school districts are issuing advance refunding bonds this year because the state is changing how it calculates and pays building aid. Building aid, rather than being based on actual debt service payments, will now be based on an "assumed amortization calculation" that assumes that districts borrow money for the maximum period of probable usefulness allowed by Local Finance Law section 11.00 and pays an assumed interest rate. Details are on the State Education Department's website.
October 2001 –
The purpose of this bulletin is two-fold:
- First, we want to assure those local governments not implementing GASB Statement No.34 that the upcoming adjustments that will be made to the fund level statements for 2002 fiscal year end reporting will not have a major impact on their record keeping and/or financial reporting to OSC. Our January 2001 accounting release focused on the changes associated with accounting and reporting of trust funds. Other changes, dealing with terminology and account codes changes, will be addressed in a future bulletin.
- Second, we want to provide those local governments contemplating implementation of GASB Statement No. 34 with some basic information about the fund financial statements that are the third element of the model. The following information is provided for those local governments contemplating the implementation of GASB Statement No. 34.
July 2001 –
The purpose of this bulletin is to alert you to legislative changes requested by the State Comptroller that apply to budgets for fiscal years commencing on or after January 1, 2001 and to provide information that will help determine a reasonable level of fund balance for your government.
January 2001 –
GASB Statement No. 34 makes significant changes to the accounting and reporting requirements for expendable and nonexpendable trusts. The statement eliminates the designation of expendable and nonexpendable trust funds and creates new funds based on the ability to use these resources for governmental purposes.
January 2001 –
Publication Listing and Order Form
November 2000 –
GASB Statement No. 33 provides accounting and reporting guidelines for nonexchange transactions. A nonexchange transaction is one in which a government receives (or gives) value without directly giving (or receiving) equal value in exchange.
June 2000 –
The Risk Retention Fund (CS) was originally established to account for risk financing and insurance activity in a single fund using the modified accrual basis of accounting. As a result of pronouncements from the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB), the Risk Retention Fund (CS) will be eliminated from the Uniform System of Accounts for fiscal years ending after December 31, 2000.
March 2000 –
Chapter 497 of the Laws of 1999 amends the Vehicle and Traffic Law effective onApril 1, 2000 to provide that every county and the City of New York shall establish a handicapped parking education program for the purpose of providing education, advocacy and increased public awareness of handicapped parking laws.
August 1999 –
Since 1990 the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC), through its revolving loan fund, has provided over 330 local governments and public authorities nearly $5 billion in long and short term loans to finance eligible clean water and drinking water projects.
This bulletin describes the types of loans that are currently available from the revolving fund (long term leverage loans, short term direct loans, and long term direct loans) and the proper accounting treatment for each loan type.
October 1998 –
Changes in Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 457 require local governments to hold deferred compensation in trust for employees and their beneficiaries. Previously, IRC Section 457 required that these assets remained the property of the employer until paid or made available to the participant; as such, they were held in an agency capacity and were subject to the claims of the government’s general creditors.
September 1998 –
Legislation requested by the State Comptroller (Chapter 465, Laws of 1998) permits town and village courts, who meet certain criteria, to transmit monthly receipts to the Chief Fiscal Officer (CFO) without first sending them to the State for distribution. Previously, courts had to send the moneys they collected to the State Comptroller, who, on a quarterly basis, sent the local share back to the municipalities. 1996 legislation created a temporary pilot program for up to 100 municipalities, but this 1998 legislation makes the program permanent and opens it up to all municipalities who have the capacity to file reports electronically and meet other criteria. This gives localities access to their revenues sooner and improves their cash flow.