Watchdog: Follow the Money

New York school district financial screwup leaves $55 million budget hole

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Education,Watchdog,New York,Kelly Cohen,Inspectors General,Follow the Money

The Yonkers, N.Y., school system's finances are in "complete disarray," the city's inspector general has found.

The system's understaffed and inexperienced finance department mishandled two years of state-aid projections, causing a $55 million budget hole, the Journal News reported.

The IG called the dilemma "foreseeable and preventable."

The school district budgeted anticipated state aid that wasn't coming in both 2012-13 and 2013-14, either ignoring or misunderstanding changes in state budget rules, according to the IG.

"It is difficult to comprehend an error of this magnitude given the resources generally available to school districts and their staffs," the IG, Brendan McGrath, wrote in a report released Tuesday.

Auditors first flagged the finance department's poor condition in 2010, according to the Journal News.

"The District will continue to work collaboratively with all stakeholders to address the [bail-out deal] and formulate appropriate strategies that provide for fiscal stability," Schools Superintendent Michael Yazurlo said in a statement.

Read the full story here.

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Kelly Cohen

Staff Writer
The Washington Examiner