Audit Committee Charter

Audit Committee Authority

The Board of Education of the  Pine Bush  Central  School  District  unanimously  adopted  a resolution  at its December 13, 2005 meeting establishing an audit committee  to assist the Board  of Education  in  the oversight of the internal and external audit functions.  The  requirement  to  create  an  audit  committee was established by Education Law § 2116-c (4). According to § 2116-c (4), the role  of an  audit committee shall be advisory and any recommendations it provides to the Board shall not be substituted for any  required  review  and  acceptance  by  the  Board  of  Education.  The  District’s original resolution also states that the district’s  audit  committee  shall  consist  of  the  Board  of Education as a “whole” in accordance with Chapter 263 of the Laws of 2005. Any recommendations established by the audit committee will be brought  forward  and acted upon  during regular  session of  the Board of Education. In July 2007, the Board of Education decided to change the makeup of the committee. Effective with the 2007-08 school year,  the  audit  committee  will  consist  of  three  (3)  board  members  and approximately  four (4) community  members.

 

Mission 

The Board of Education of the Pine  Bush  Central  School District  has  established  an  audit  committee  to provide  independent  assistance to the Board  in the oversight of the following   matters:

  • Assist the Board in providing oversight of the  internal  and external  audit functions,  including  the appointment  of the  internal  and external auditors.
  • Oversee the competitive Request for Proposal Process (RFP) used to solicit quotations for the District’s  annual  external audit.
  • Review the scope, plan  and  coordination  of the external audit.
  • Review corrective action plans and necessary improvement based on audit findings and recommendations  received  from external  and  internal auditors.
  • Provide a communications  link between  the external and  internal auditors and the   Board.

 

The audit committee will provide oversight of the internal and external audit functions, oversee the competitive request for proposal (RFP) process  for  the  external  auditor,  oversee  the  competitive request for proposal (RFP) process for the internal auditor, review the scope and  plan  of the  external audit, review corrective action plans and make necessary improvements based upon recommendations from  internal and  external auditors.

 

Composition  and Requisite  Skills 

The Pine Bush Central School District Audit Committee is comprised of three (3) Board members and approximately four (4) community members. Each audit  committee  member  will  serve  a  one-year term.

 

The audit committee members collectively should possess the expertise and experience in accounting, auditing, financial reporting and school district finances needed to understand and evaluate the school district’s financial statements, the external audit of those statements and the district’s internal audit activities.  Accordingly,  the audit committee’s  members  should:

  • Possess  the  requisite  skills  and  experience  necessary  to  understand  technical   and   complex financial  reporting issues.
  • Have the ability to communicate with, and offer advice  and  assistance  to,  public  finance  officers  and auditors.
  • Be knowledgeable about internal controls, financial statement audits  and  management/ operational  audits.
  • Seek explanations and advice from the  internal  auditor,  external  auditor,  internal  claims auditor, school business official, and any other staff and consultants as needed to provide an understanding of the technical and complex financial reporting requirements and allow for informed and comprehensive decisions about internal controls, financial statement audits and management/operational   audits.

 

 

Duties  and Responsibilities

The duties and responsibilities of the Pine Bush Central School District Aud it Committee include the following:

 

External  Audit Focus

  • Recommend  selection  of the external  auditor to the Board  of Education.
  • Meet with the external auditor prior to commencement of the audit to  review  the  engagement letter.
  • Review and discuss with the external auditor any risk assessment of the district’s fiscal operations developed as part of the auditor’s responsibilities under governmental auditing standards  for a financial  statement  audit and  federal single audit standards,  if applicable.
  • Review the external auditor’s assessment  of the district’s  system of internal    controls.
  • Receive and review  the  draft  annual  audit  report  and  accompanying  draft  management  letter and, working directly with the external auditor, assist the Board of Education m interpreting  such documents.
  • Make a recommendation  to the Board  of Education  on accepting the annual  audit  report.
  • Review any corrective action plan developed by the school district and assist the Board of Education  in the implementation  of such plans.

 

Internal Audit Focus

  • Make recommendations to the Board of Education regarding  the  appointment  of  the  internal auditor.
  • Assist  in the oversight  of the internal  audit function.
  • Review the annual internal audit plan to ensure that high risk  areas  and  key  control  activities are periodically  evaluated  and tested.
  • Review the results of internal audit  activities  and  significant  recommendations  and  findings of the  internal auditor.
  • Monitor  implementation  of the  internal  auditor’s recommendations  by management.
  • Provide  input on the performance  evaluation of the internal   auditor.

 

Administrative Matters

  • Hold regularly  scheduled meetings.
  • Administer  other related  duties as prescribed  by the Board  of Education .
  • Review  and  revise the Audit Committee Charter.

 

Membership

The membership duties of the Pine Bush Central School District Audit Committee include the following:

 

  • Good Faith – Members of the Committee shall perform their duties in good faith, in a manner they reasonably believe to be in the best interest of the Committee and the District  with  such  care as a generally prudent  person  in a similar position  would  use under  similar circumstances.
  • Independence – The following individuals would be precluded from being an audit committee member:
  1. Someone currently  or previously  employed  by the District during the past  five years.
  2. Someone currently or previously providing services contractually to the District during the past five years.
  3. Someone of the immediate family (husband, wife & any  children  and  their  spouses)  or  close family member (parent, sibling  or non-dependent  child) of an  individual  who  is, or  has been in any of the past five years, employed by the district, providing services  contractually to the District or contractually related to the District as a board member or an administrator.
  4. Someone who is a partner in, a controlling owner or an executive of, any for-profit business to which the district made, or from which the district received, payments that are or have been significant [$10,000] to the district for the for-profit business entity in any of the past five years.

 

  • Confidentiality – During the exercise of duties and  responsibilities,  the  Committee  members may have access to confidential information. The Committee shall have an  obligation  to the district to maintain  the confidentiality  of such  information.
  • Oath of Office – All non-board members, who are members of the audit committee, should be administered  the  district’s oath  of office by the District  Clerk.

 

 

Meetings and Notification 

The Pine Bush Central School District Audit Committee shall meet a minimum  of two (2) times  each year. An agenda of each meeting should be clearly determined  in  advance  and  the  audit committee should receive supporting documents in advance, for reasonable  review  and  consideration. Any member of the Board of Education, who is  not  a member  of  the  audit  committee,  may  attend  audit committee meetings  if authorized  by a resolution  of the  Board.

 

The audit committee shall prepare minutes  of each  meeting.  At  a minimum,  the minutes  will  include the following:

  • Copies of the meeting agenda
  • Date, attendance  and location of the  meeting
  • Brief  summary of the topics  discussed
  • Copies of materials  discussed  or presented  at the meeting
  • A record  of all actions or recommendations  agreed to by the   committee

 

Decision-Making  Process 

All  decisions  shall  be  reached  by  consensus  of  those  members  present  at  the  meeting.  Consensus is defined  as an acceptable  solution that all can agree to support. If consensus  cannot be reached,  polling  of the voting membership will take place and simple majority will rule. A quorum constitutes a simple majority of the total membership  and meetings will not be conducted  unless  a quorum  is present.

 

Reporting  Requirements 

The Pine Bush Central School District Audit Committee has the duty and responsibility to report its activities to the Board of Education. Periodic written reports of audit committee activities  are  an  important communication link between the audit committee and the Board on key decisions and responsibilities.  The Audit  committee’s reporting  requirements  are to:

  • Report on the scope and breadth of committee activities so that the Board of Education is kept informed  of its work.
  • Provide minutes of meetings and work sessions which clearly record the actions and recommendations  of the Committee.
  • Report on their review of the District’s draft annual  audit  report  and  accompanying  management letter and their review of  significant  findings  and  recommendations  of  the  internal auditor.
  • Report on suspected  fraud or abuse or material  defects in the internal control   systems.
  • Report on material or significant non-compliances with laws  or  District  policies  and  regulations.
  • Report on any other matters that should be disclosed    to the Board  of Education.

 

 

Review  of the Charter

The Pine Bush Central School District Audit Committee shall assess and report to the  Board  of  Education on the adequacy of this Charter no less than an annual basis or as necessary. Charter modifications, as recommended by the Audit committee, should  be  presented  to  the  Board  of  Education  in writing for their review and action will be acted upon  by the Board   of Education.

 

Annual Review

  • Charter recommended by Audit Committee & Submitted & Accepted by BOE – 11/14/06 Meetings Revised Charter reviewed by the B. OE. – February 26, 2008
  • Revised Charter reviewed by Audit Committee – August 4, 2009; Submitted to BOE at August 25, 2009 meeting with no changes recommended; BOE Accepted Audit Committee’s recommendation for  no changes at this time.
  • Charter reviewed by Audit Committee on January 27, 2014 meeting with no changes recommended; Submitted to BOE to on April 8, 2014.
  • Charter reviewed by Audit Committee on June 20, 2016. Submitted to BOE on June 28, 2016.
  • Charter for  review by Audit Committee on June 18, 2018 !Submit to BOE on June 26, 2018
  • Charter for  review by Audit Committee on April 29, 2019/ Submit amended to BOE on May  14, 2019
  • Charter for  review by Audit Committee on October 5, 2020, submit to BOE October 13, 2020 (actual Nov 24, 2020)
Pine Bush Central School District
State Route 302, Pine Bush, NY 12566
Phone: (845) 744-2031
Fax: (845) 744-6189
Tim O. Mains
Superintendent of Schools
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