RCSD audit: NY Comptroller report details district’s financial crisis


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — New York State Comptroller Tim DiNapoli’s office has released its findings of an audit into the Rochester City School District’s finances.

The report says there was six areas of “severe under budgeting” in the district’s 2018-2019 budget, including: Health and dental insurance, substitute teachers, charter school tuition, retirement, contract transportation, and BOCES.

The report says, “based upon the Superintendent’s November 12, 2019 presentation, the District calculated it needed $64.8 million in budget modifications. District officials presented their estimates of $28 million in reductions and efficiencies implemented as well as $9.7 million in staff reductions, leaving a deficit balance by their estimates of approximately $27.1 million.

More | How RCSD got here: Timeline of events in district’s budget crisis

“These estimates differ from our projection of $70.7 million in total 2019-20 budget modification needs. We project the actions taken by the Superintendent and Board will result in $21.6 million in reductions and efficiencies and $8.6 million in staff reductions, meaning absent any further modifications, the District is on course to finish the 2019-20 school year with a cumulative $40.5 million deficit.”

The report also says, “Absent additional severe budget cuts, short-term borrowings or outside intervention, the District will not have sufficient resources to meet its financial obligations by the end of the fiscal year ending June 30, 2020.

While we commend the Superintendent and Board for the actions they have taken to modify the 2019-2020 budget, many of them were one-time budgetary savings and do not alleviate the structural deficits that may exist in future budgets. Consequently, without additional recurring revenues, the Superintendent and Board will need to implement additional budget and or staffing cuts for the district’s 2020-2021 budget.”

RCSD Superintendent and the district school board are expected to discuss more about this report at a meeting Thursday night.

Comptroller’s report:

Check back with News 8 WROC as we will continue to update this developing story.

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