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Audit faults Town of Tonawanda for how it records recreation fees

The Town of Tonawanda utilized "poor internal controls" in recording $4.5 million in recreation fees, according to an audit released Tuesday by the State Comptroller's Office.

No wrongdoing was uncovered by the audit, which analyzed cash receipts received by the town's Youth, Parks and Recreation Department from Jan. 1, 2016 to April 18, 2017. But it found that the director did not develop procedures to segregate cash receipt duties or provide adequate oversight.

One town employee was found to have "almost complete control" over cash receipts, according to the audit.

In addition, State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli said the Town Board did not ensure an annual audit of the department was completed.

The town collects recreation fees at 18 locations including the golf dome, golf courses, aqua and fitness center, pools and youth centers.

"Despite the risk created by these poor internal controls, recreation fees were generally recorded accurately and deposited in a timely fashion," state auditors said.

In a written response, Town Supervisor Joseph H. Emminger said, "We are pleased that the audit did not identify any instances of fraud or misappropriation of funds." The town will use the audit's recommendations to strengthen controls over cash receipts, Emminger said.



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