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Jeffersonville audit finds no errors, just concerns

By Dan Hust
JEFFERSONVILLE — August 17, 2010 — A just-released NYS Comptroller’s Office audit gives relatively good marks to the Village of Jeffersonville for its fiscal and shared-services policies, while also noting instances where the 420-resident village needs to improve.
Auditors focused on Jeff’s cooperation and consolidation efforts with the Town of Callicoon (in which it sits) and its internal controls over selected financial activities from June 1, 2008 to December 16, 2009.
The state lauded the village for sharing assessment and code enforcement services with the township, saving more than $3,500 in 2008.
Also highlighted were the sharing of highway machinery/labor, the justice court and dog control services.
Auditors recommended Jeff explore such opportunities further.
They did not find any wrongdoing or errors in their investigation, but auditors did cite the village board for not adequately overseeing and segregating the clerk-treasurer’s duties pertaining to cash receipts, disbursements and payroll.
The state also criticized the lack of procedures to track leave usage, and auditors urged the village not to continue to let a vendor electronically withdraw funds it is owed by directly accessing the village’s bank account.
Additionally, the state said Jeffersonville officials should have bid out a $38,535 machinery rental and a $13,968 fire hydrant replacement purchase.
“However,” auditors added, “we did not find any inappropriate purchases.”
And they noted that, according to village officials, the fire hydrant supplier is a longtime, well-regarded vendor with Jeff, providing good service even on weekends and holidays.
And when the auditors checked into competitors’ prices, they found the village’s vendor did indeed offer the best equipment at the lowest cost.
Lastly in the audit, the state cited the village for not requesting reimbursement for approximately $1,200 in refundable taxes on more than $8,000 worth of unleaded fuel purchases.
Jeffersonville Mayor Ed Justus wrote a response to the state on July 9, promising to fix the matters raised in the audit – save for one.
“Considering the size of the village, we cannot segregate these duties [of the clerk-treasurer],” he wrote. “The cost of doing that would be exorbitant for us to absorb. Therefore, we are taking steps to implement compensating controls such as complete board review of the bank statements, including review of each deposit and disbursement.”
As for more sharing of services, with just four full-time and two part-time employees in Jeff, “we feel any further consolidation would result in the town having to pick up additional personnel or face a loss of services.”
Justus took great issue with the tone of the first draft of the audit, deeming it rife with “anti-village bias.”
Those comments apparently resonated with the state, which Justus said substantially revised its audit to more accurately and fairly reflect the issues.
That updated audit – and the village’s original response – are available online for viewing at

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