Bill S5795-2015

Relates to reporting school finances, reserve funds, final annual budgets and multi-year financial plans

Relates to reporting school finances, reserve funds, final annual budgets and multi-year financial plans.

Details

Actions

  • Jun 25, 2015: referred to education
  • Jun 25, 2015: DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
  • Jun 25, 2015: PASSED SENATE
  • Jun 25, 2015: ORDERED TO THIRD READING CAL.1897
  • Jun 25, 2015: COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES
  • Jun 3, 2015: REFERRED TO EDUCATION

Votes

VOTE: COMMITTEE VOTE: - Rules - Jun 25, 2015
Ayes (20): Flanagan, Bonacic, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Farley, Hannon, Larkin, LaValle, Marcellino, Nozzolio, Seward, Skelos, Young, Valesky, Stewart-Cousins, Breslin, Dilan, Espaillat, Hassell-Thompson, Krueger
Ayes W/R (3): Little, Gianaris, Montgomery
Absent (1): Parker
Excused (1): Perkins

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S5795

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to requiring notice of reserve funds and reserves funded by resolution and to require that each school district post on its website, if any, a final annual budget and any multi-year financial plan adopted by the board of education or trustees

PURPOSE: To provide increased transparency in school district fiscal operations.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Sections 1 and 2 of this bill would amend Subdivision 5 of Section 1608 and Subdivision 5 of Section 1716 of the Education Law to require school districts to include a schedule of all reserve funds as part of the detailed statement that is appended to the annual budget document.

Section 3 of this bill adds a new Section 3653 to the Education Law to require boards of education or trustees of a school district to authorize any increased funding of reserves by resolution.

Section 4 of this bill adds a new subdivision 3-b to Section 2116-a of the Education Law to require each school district to post on its website, if any, the annual external audit report and the corrective action plan prepared in response to any findings contained in the annual external audit report or management letter, or any final audit report issued by the State Comptroller.

Sections five and six of this bill add a new Subdivision 7 to the current Section 2022 of the Education Law and the language to which such section will revert if the current law expires to require that each school district post on its website, if any, a final annual budget and any multi-year financial plan adopted by the board of education or trustees.

Section 7 of the bill would make this act effective on the first of July next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law; provided, however.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2013-2014 - S 4182-B /A3733-B 2011-12 - S. 5689-A / A. 7815-A

JUSTIFICATION: The Office of the State Comptroller's experience auditing school districts and BOCES, as required by Chapter 263 of the Laws of 2005, has resulted in audits disclosing a number of circumstances in which certain significant fiscal activities of school districts and BOCES were undertaken without adequate transparency to)the governing board and taxpayers, in some cases because of a lack of statutory direction.

In such audits, it was also found that there were a number of situations when school boards did not have current information about the amounts in the district reserves. Without this key information, school boards cannot effectively manage the finances of the districts. To avoid this situation and increase transparency in school district fiscal operations, the bill would require that all transfers into reserve funds be made pursuant to board resolution, and that a

schedule of all reserves, including the balance in each reserve fund and any plans for use of the reserve in the ensuing fiscal year, be included in a schedule appended to the annual budget document.

The requirements for posting on a school district's website the annual external audit report and the corrective action plan prepared in response to any findings contained in the annual external audit report or management letter, or any final audit report issued by the State Comptroller as well as a final annual budget and any multi-year financial plan adopted by the board of education or trustees increases the transparency and accountability of the school district to the taxpayers.

The State Comptroller urges passage of this legislation.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the first of July next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law; provided, however, that the amendment to section 2022 of the education law made by section five of this act shall be subject to the expiration and reversion of such section pursuant to section 23 of part A of chapter 436 of the laws of 1997, as amended, when upon such date the provisions of section six of this act shall take effect.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5795 2015-2016 Regular Sessions IN SENATE June 3, 2015 ___________
Introduced by Sen. MARCELLINO -- (at request of the State Comptroller) -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Education AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to requiring notice of reserve funds and reserves funded by resolution and to require that each school district post on its website, if any, a final annual budg- et and any multi-year financial plan adopted by the board of education or trustees THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 5 of section 1608 of the education law, as amended by section 5 of part A of chapter 436 of the laws of 1997, is amended to read as follows: 5. The trustee or board of trustees shall append to the statement of estimated expenditures a detailed statement of the total compensation to be paid to the superintendent of schools, and any assistant or associate superintendents of schools in the ensuing school year, including a delineation of the salary, annualized cost of benefits and any in-kind or other form of remuneration, AND A SCHEDULE OF RESERVE FUNDS, SETTING FORTH THE NAME OF EACH RESERVE FUND, A DESCRIPTION OF ITS PURPOSE, THE BALANCE AS OF THE CLOSE OF THE THIRD QUARTER OF THE CURRENT SCHOOL DISTRICT FISCAL YEAR AND A BRIEF STATEMENT EXPLAINING ANY PLANS FOR THE USE OF EACH SUCH RESERVE FUND FOR THE ENSUING FISCAL YEAR. The trustees shall also append a list of all other school administrators and supervi- sors, if any, whose annual salary will be eighty-five thousand dollars or more in the ensuing school year, with the title of their positions and annual salary identified; provided however, that the commissioner may adjust such salary level to reflect increases in administrative salaries after June thirtieth, nineteen hundred ninety-eight. The trus- tees shall submit a copy of such list and statement, in a form prescribed by the commissioner, of compensation to the commissioner
within five days after their preparation. The commissioner shall compile such data, together with the data submitted pursuant to subdivision three of section seventeen hundred sixteen of this chapter, into a single statewide compilation, which shall be made available to the governor, the legislature, and other interested parties upon request. S 2. Subdivision 5 of section 1716 of the education law, as amended by section 7 of part A of chapter 436 of the laws of 1997, is amended to read as follows: 5. The board of education shall append to the statement of estimated expenditures a detailed statement of the total compensation to be paid to the superintendent of schools, and any assistant or associate super- intendents of schools in the ensuing school year, including a deline- ation of the salary, annualized cost of benefits and any in-kind or other form of remuneration, AND A SCHEDULE OF RESERVE FUNDS, SETTING FORTH THE NAME OF EACH RESERVE FUND, A DESCRIPTION OF ITS PURPOSE, THE BALANCE AS OF THE CLOSE OF THE THIRD QUARTER OF THE CURRENT SCHOOL DISTRICT FISCAL YEAR AND A BRIEF STATEMENT EXPLAINING ANY PLANS FOR THE USE OF EACH SUCH RESERVE FUND FOR THE ENSUING FISCAL YEAR. The board shall also append a list of all other school administrators and supervi- sors, if any, whose annual salary will be eighty-five thousand dollars or more in the ensuing school year, with the title of their positions and annual salary identified; provided however, that the commissioner may adjust such salary level to reflect increases in administrative salaries after June thirtieth, nineteen hundred ninety-eight. The board of education shall submit a copy of such list and statement, in a form prescribed by the commissioner, of compensation to the commissioner within five days after their preparation. The commissioner shall compile such data, together with the data submitted pursuant to subdivision four of section sixteen hundred eight of this chapter, into a single state- wide compilation, which shall be made available to the governor, the legislature, and other interested parties upon request. S 3. The education law is amended by adding a new section 3653 to read as follows: S 3653. RESERVES FUNDED BY RESOLUTION. IN ADDITION TO ANY OTHER REQUIREMENTS, NO MONIES SHALL BE PAID OR TRANSFERRED INTO ANY RESERVE FUND, ESTABLISHED PURSUANT TO THIS CHAPTER OR ANY OTHER CHAPTER OF LAW, FOR THE PURPOSE OF INCREASING THE FUNDING OF SUCH RESERVE FUND, UNLESS EXPRESSLY AUTHORIZED BY A RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OR TRUS- TEES OF A SCHOOL DISTRICT. S 4. Section 2116-a of the education law is amended by adding a new subdivision 3-b to read as follows: 3-B. EACH SCHOOL DISTRICT SHALL IN A TIMELY FASHION POST ON ITS WEBSITE, IF ANY, THE ANNUAL EXTERNAL AUDIT REPORT AND THE CORRECTIVE ACTION PLAN PREPARED IN RESPONSE TO ANY FINDINGS CONTAINED IN THE ANNUAL EXTERNAL AUDIT REPORT OR MANAGEMENT LETTER, OR ANY FINAL AUDIT REPORT ISSUED BY THE STATE COMPTROLLER. S 5. Section 2022 of the education law, as amended by section 7 of part A of chapter 97 of the laws of 2011, is amended by adding a new subdivision 7 to read as follows: 7. EACH SCHOOL DISTRICT SHALL POST ON ITS WEBSITE, IF ANY, A FINAL ANNUAL BUDGET AND ANY MULTI-YEAR FINANCIAL PLAN ADOPTED BY THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OR TRUSTEES. S 6. Section 2022 of the education law, as amended by section 23 of part A of chapter 436 of the laws of 1997, is amended by adding a new subdivision 7 to read as follows:
7. EACH SCHOOL DISTRICT SHALL POST ON ITS WEBSITE, IF ANY, A FINAL ANNUAL BUDGET AND ANY MULTI-YEAR FINANCIAL PLAN ADOPTED BY THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OR TRUSTEES. S 7. This act shall take effect on the first of July next succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law; provided, however, that the amendment to section 2022 of the education law made by section five of this act shall be subject to the expiration and reversion of such section pursuant to section 23 of part A of chapter 436 of the laws of 1997, as amended, when upon such date the provisions of section six of this act shall take effect.

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