Comptroller: Some progress in follow-up to Irvington’s financial ‘disarray’ audit

TRENTON – State Comptroller Matthew Boxer sent a letter this week to Irvington Mayor Wayne Smith, a follow-up from a performance audit from 2009 that found financial management “disarray” and inadequate internal controls.

Among other revelations, the initial audit found the town’s general ledger out of balance by $59.7 million, of which roughly $1.4 million was never reconciled.

“We found that Township officials have made some progress in implementing the recommendations contained in our initial audit report,” Boxer wrote this week. Invington officials have fully implemented eight of 21 recommendations made in the audit; nine recommendations have been partially implemented and four have not been implemented at all.

One of the recommendations not implemented was reconciliation of subsidiary ledgers, which constitutes a “material weakness,” according to Boxer’s office. Another non-implemented recommendation was submission of required reports in a timely manner to the state’s Division of Local Government Services, like Irvington’s FY10 Annual Debt Statement, which reached Trenton 129 business days late. The town’s FY09 annual audit report was submitted 107 business days late.

The initial audit found $36,371 in town-issued cell phone overage charges over a 13-month period, which declined significantly once the town switched to the wireless service contract used by the State of New Jersey, Boxer’s letter states. Even so, the town was found to be lax in recouping overages in the follow-up. Switching to the state cell phone plan also reduced township bills by approximately $5,500 per month, satisfying another audit recommendation.

According to a response to Boxer from town officials, Irvington is “continuing to take steps to address those recommendations that were either partially implemented or not implemented.” Comptroller: Some progress in follow-up to Irvington’s financial ‘disarray’ audit