V'ville audit findings show poor financial controls

An audit released by the state comptroller's office found that former Voorheesville superintendent Alan McCartney had charged at least $11,500 to the district for everything from expensive dinners to an evening at an Albany-area strip club.

The audit also found that a school official currently working in the district possibly violated leave time regulations and another may have accepted an inappropriate gift from a bus manufacturer.

The findings came after the office of the state comptroller decided to expand the audit, originally released in January, that found that McCartney and former assistant superintendent Anthony Marturano improperly paid themselves $216,000 for leave and other employment benefits.

According to the audit, of the $11,500 charged to or reimbursed from the district for various personal expenses, only $611 of those charges was paid back by McCartney. The audit stated money paid back by McCartney included the $357 he charged at a strip club on Dec. 17, 2004.

The same night, McCartney used the district credit card for an overnight stay at a hotel located approximately 12 miles from his home. The claim for the stay indicated its purpose was for a meeting, although the claim did not include a copy of the hotel receipt or why it was necessary to spend the night.

McCartney declined to comment on the audit's findings. His lawyer, Stephen Coffey, could not be reached for comment.

The audit also found the former superintendent submitted reimbursement claims totaling nearly $4,600 for more than 120 day and overnight trips. Those claims, state the audit, did not include all travel destinations or departure and arrival times, making the grounds for mileage reimbursement indeterminable.

For example, the audit showed an instance in which McCartney was reimbursed by the district for 625-mile trip to attend a basketball game involving a school team. The auditors used an Internet mapping Web site to determine the trip from the superintendent's home to the game site was only 440 miles, leaving it unclear why the district paid McCartney for the additional 185 miles.

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