Saratoga County

State audit shows Vischer Ferry fire company at risk

A state audit of the Vischer Ferry Volunteer Fire Company has revealed inconsistencies that could ha

A state audit of the Vischer Ferry Volunteer Fire Company has revealed inconsistencies that could have it vulnerable to financial risk.

The audit, released in October, looked at the fire company’s activity between January 2015 and the end of March 2016. It sought areas in which the fire company could improve or become more efficient in order to reduce costs, improve service and protect its assets.

In 2015, the organization spent $62,862 and had total revenue of $61,177. Its board, made up of five elected members, is responsible for managing financial resources, while the treasurer is “responsible for the receipt and custody of company funds, for disbursing and accounting for those funds, for preparing periodic and annual financial reports and for meeting any other reporting requirements,” according to the state audit.

The fire company’s constitution requires the treasurer to obtain approval by a majority of the company’s voting members present at any company meeting before spending any of the company’s money.

“The board needs to improve its oversight of the company’s cash disbursement process to ensure that cash disbursements are approved and for valid purposes,” states the audit report by Deputy Comptroller Gabriel Deyo.

Eric Henderson, the fire company’s president, responded with a prepared statement saying, “In general, we agree with (the audit’s) findings.”

“The board appreciates the diligent and thorough work done by your office in preparing this report,” Henderson wrote. “Although all of the transactions reviewed in the audit were for valid company purposes, the audit did uncover certain areas in which insufficient policies and procedures expose our company to some financial risk.”

Deyo advised the board to oversee the treasurer’s disbursement activities and to review and approve all debit card transactions before purchases are made.

Reach Gazette reporter Cady Kuzmich at 269-7239, [email protected] or @cady_kuz on Twitter.

Categories: Business, News, Schenectady County

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