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Comptroller releases state audits

ALBANY - State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli announced today the following audits have been issued:

Battery Park City Authority, Selected Aspects of Discretionary Spending (2012-S-158)
Auditors sampled 69 discretionary expenditures totaling $112,132 and questioned 53 totaling $100,700 because these transactions did not appear necessary, were not clearly related to the purpose of the authority, were not properly approved or were not adequately supported with documentation. Included in the questioned expenditures were payments totaling $61,800 for charitable contributions to various not-for-profit organizations. In these instances, the authority lacked documentation to show how it determined which organizations to select for donations, how contributing to such organization was related to or supported the authority's mission and why the donated amounts were appropriate. Our follow up showed that the authority made payments totaling $1.05 million for the audit period for charitable donations.

Office of General Services, State Agency Small-Dollar Purchases (Follow-Up) (2013-F-25)
In an initial report, issued in September 2010, auditors looked at the extent to which state agencies process small-dollar transactions using paper-based voucher processes instead of the State procurement card, and to identify potential cost savings and revenue enhancements achievable through better use of procurement cards. In a follow-up, auditors found OGS officials have made significant progress in addressing the issues identified in the initial audit. All three prior audit recommendations have been implemented.

Office for People With Developmental Disabilities, Fire Prevention, Safety and Control (2013-S-20)
Auditors found OPWDD is in compliance with applicable fire prevention, safety and control requirements that help ensure the safety of the vulnerable populations it serves and has significantly improved its fire safety procedures and practices since a 2009 fire in one of its residences that resulted in the death of four individuals.

Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, Fire Prevention, Safety and Control (2013-S-40)
Auditors found OASAS is in compliance with applicable fire prevention, safety and control requirements that help ensure the safety of the vulnerable populations it serves.

Department of Civil Service, New York State Dental Program: Payments for Scaling and Root Planing Procedures (Follow-Up) (2013-F-20)
An initial audit report issued in July 2010 focused on Group Health Incorporated’s (GHI) controls over the payment of scaling and root planing procedures and to determine if GHI overpaid for scaling and root planing services. GHI officials have made progress in correcting the problems auditors identified in the initial report. However, improvements are still needed. Of the three prior audit recommendations, two have been implemented and one recommendation is no longer applicable.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Inspecting Highway Bridges and Repairing Defects (2012-S-32)
Generally, the MTA’s Long Island Rail Road its Bridges and Tunnels department perform bridge inspections and related repairs to correct flag deficiencies in a timely manner as required by state and federal regulations. However, there were a limited number of exceptions suggesting a need for further improvement.  From a sample of 116 flags, auditors found that nine B&T safety flags and two department safety flags on LIRR bridges remained unresolved for extended periods of time ranging from 12 to 45 months after being identified.  For three B&T Red Flags, the required re-inspections were performed from two to eleven days late.  Five LIRR bridges were being inspected by both the department and the LIRR.

Department of Health, Overpayments to Cabrini Medical Center - Follow-Up (2013-F-19)
An audit report issued in April 2012, identified $1.9 million in Medicaid overpayments to Cabrini Medical Center. The overpayments occurred because a billing company (hired by Cabrini) incorrectly altered information on Cabrini's claims and resubmitted the incorrect claims to Medicaid. In a follow-up, auditors found DOH officials made significant progress in addressing the problems identified in the initial audit. This included the recovery of improper payments totaling $1.46 million, in addition to $904,000 in payments prevented by the initial audit.  However, further actions are still needed. Of the six prior audit recommendations, three were implemented and three were partially implemented.