DUTCHESS COUNTY COMPTROLLER ROBIN LOIS RELEASES VEHICLE INVENTORY AUDIT FOR 2018-2023
Poughkeepsie, N.Y. – The Office of the Dutchess County Comptroller has released an audit of the Dutchess County Vehicle Inventory for the years 2018-2023. The Comptroller’s Office physically counted over 500 vehicles across the County in various departments, a count of which has not been done in over a decade. The main objective of this audit was to determine if the County’s centralized inventory system accurately reflected verified assets and matched the County’s financial reports.
The final audit determined that the current vehicle policy is outdated and therefore does not promote consistency and accuracy of assets. The Comptroller’s Office recommends that an updated vehicle policy be executed and enforced to encourage greater consistency and properly safeguard County assets. Other findings and recommendations were cited in this report across many departments, including timelier disposition of assets to ensure unnecessary insurance costs are not paid, and tighter controls over take-home vehicles.
“County vehicles are important assets required to deliver essential services and protect our citizens.” said Comptroller Lois. “It is a critical responsibility to ensure the safeguarding of those assets as well as the accuracy of our financial records.”
This report also confirms the County Executive’s $75,876 lease of a 2021 Chevy Tahoe and identifies the execution of said lease as giving the appearance of circumventing normal legislative approval and public transparency, following a similarly extravagant vehicle purchase denial by our office in 2020.
“Leasing decisions should be held to the same standard as any purchase in the procurement policy,” said Comptroller Lois. “Public monies should be spent in the best interest of the taxpayers and guard against extravagance. This lease did not have the public’s interest in mind.”
The Comptroller’s Office is thankful for the diligence of their auditors, as well as the cooperation of the Auto Center and various departments for their assistance in completing this important review over the past several months.
The report can be found in its entirety, here.