RIOC’s Audit Committee Meeting, set for this afternoon at 4:00, matters because the state hides so much. Discussions, undoubtedly staged, consider wrapping up the books for the last fiscal year.
by David Stone
What’s on the Audit Committee Agenda?
Government board Audit Committees matter because the public has so little visibility into how their money is being spent.
This afternoon at 4:00, Roosevelt Island’s representatives on the RIOC Board of Directors sit as the Audit Committee and review, among other things, the books for the last fiscal year.
The state-run Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation is required by law to submit its financial records for review by an outside accounting firm. That firm then confirms the numbers as valid.
The legal responsibilities of a board member in a New York State agency are many and weighty. But the last thing we want from our members is for them to be rubber stamps.
For that reason, the Audit Committee’s most important duty is to ask hard questions of staff about how money was spent, what worked well, where improvements are needed and why some things cost so much.
We’ve all heard stories of corruption and waste in government. The Audit Committee is our best, maybe only, defense against those ills.
- Audited Financial Statements for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2022
- Annual Report for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2022
- Report on Procurement Contracts for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2022
- Report on Investments for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2022
- Property Report for Fiscal Year Ending March 31, 2022
- Insurance Binder for Public Officials/Employment Practices Policy
But then, there’s another in a string of executive sessions where the board hides behind a cloud of obscurity and, most likely, hears about another exit or arrival under the tumultuous management of President/CEO Shelton J. Haynes.
Discussion of the Medical, Financial, Credit or Employment History of a Particular Person or Corporation, or Matters Leading to the Appointment, Employment, Promotion, Demotion, Discipline, Suspension, Dismissal or Removal of a Particular Person or Corporation.
This is essentially legalese regurgitated as a disguise shielding the executives from public scrutiny.
Adding significantly to mushrooming distrust, public materials germane to this meeting have not been posted yet, although they are certainly available.
Why This Meeting Matters
With multiple investigations underway, the focus on the last fiscal year shines a spotlight on board responsibility and agency accountability.
The Audit Committee meeting serves as a prelude for action at a full board meeting later this month. Will the committee roll over as it has for years, never looking critically at spending it approves?
A repeat performance is likely as the shipment of spine donors has not hit RIOC’s door yet. But it’s worth watching as the public record becomes real.
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