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RESPONSE TO UNJUSTIFIED ACCUSATIONS--WESTHELP ACCOUNTING--EVERY PENNY ACCOUNTED FOR
Release Date: July 16, 2007

Shortly after Councilman Sheehan’s letter on June 25 that said that an amount of $1,448,349.11, constituting unspent WestHELP rentals “was not added to fund balance totals” and that the “amount that currently has this”flexibility” is $1,448,349.11," I did two things.

 

First, I wrote a letter disclosing that Mr. Sheehan’s letter was not correct because all the WestHELP funds were recorded on the town’s books and were added to the town’s fund balance.  The $1,448,349.11 was the amount unspent from the WestHELP rents.  The bulk of these unspent funds had been held for disbursement to the ValhallaSchool Districtand the Fairview Fire District as planned under the grant contracts that had been approved by the Town Board, but were not  disbursed  when the State Comptroller recently said that this was not legal.  The balance of these unspent funds were originally planned for the civic associations and held for neighborhood purposes.  I had urged that all unspent WestHELP funds be placed in the town-wide budget as required by law.

 

Second, I asked the Town Comptroller to provide a detailed accounting for the Town Board of every penny that was received from WestHELP and where it was spent.  Today I received the Comptroller's memo containing the accounting.  I am sending it to the Town Board, and I am posting it at the end of this letter.  It lists every check that has been received and when it was deposited.  It lists every expenditure that has been made from these funds.  It shows the balance, which is exactly as previously reported.  Put another way, it shows that every penny that has been received has been accounted for and not a penny has been misapplied or misappropriated, as has been implied by Mr. Sheehan and a group of residents who make such false accusations regularly.

 

Previously I had thought that about $75,000 of the WestHELP rent had been spent for neighborhood purposes, and some critics have asked about this amount.  It was explained at the June 27 Board meeting that my statement was an error, based on a confusion about 2006 receipts that had not been made clear, and the Comptroller stated that no moneys had been spent except to the Valhalla School District, the Fairview Fire District, and appropriated as revenue to the A budget.  In this accounting the Comptroller has confirmed this..

 

I trust that this accounting will put the many nasty and unjustified accusations to rest.

 

Paul Feiner

 

TOWN OF GREENBURGH

                                                OFFICE OF COMPTROLLER

                                                       INTER OFFICE MEMORANDUM

 

T           Honorable Town Supervisor and Members of the Town Board  

   

From:      James L. Heslop, Town Comptroller

  

Subject:  WestHELP Rental Payments, Disbursements and Uses

                                                                          

Date:        July 16, 2007     

                                                             

 

The Sublease and Homeless Housing Facilities Agreement between the Countyof Westchester, Town of Greenburgh, and WestHELP became effective September 18, 2001. The term of the agreement is from September 18, 2001to September 30, 2011. For the initial period from September 18, 2001through September 30, 2002the rental amount was $1,200,000.00. For the balance of the agreement, the rent shall be in equal monthly installments of $101,903.66. The Town did not receive the first rental payment August 11, 2003. Listed below are the rental payments, disbursements to the ValhallaSchool Districtand Fairview Fire District, appropriation to the Town Outside Villages (TOV) Fund. Rental payments deposited:

 

·        August 11, 2003- $1,950,947.97 – wire transfer into Town’s bank account

·        January 2, 2004- $166,184.95 – check deposited (the gross amount of the check was $175,404.43; $9,219.48 was

                                                           credited to the interest earnings line in the

                                                           TOV Fund)

·        January 27, 2004- $203,807.32 – check deposited (the gross amount of the

                                                            check was $213,782.71; $9,975.39 was

                                                            credited to the interest earnings line in the

                                                            TOV Fund)

·        March 2, 2004- $203,807.32 – check deposited (the gross amount of the

                                                        check was $212,199.71; $8,392.39 was

                                                        credited to the interest earnings line in the

·        April 12, 2004- $203,807.32 – check deposited (the gross amount of the

                                                       check was $210,641.85; $6,834.53 was

                                                       credited to the interest earnings line in the

                                                       TOV Fund)

·        May 17, 2004- $203,807.32 – check deposited (the gross amount of the

                                                       check was $209,058.85; $5,251.53 was

                                                       credited to the interest earnings line in the

                                                       TOV Fund)

 

 

 

 

·        June 8, 2004- $203,807.32 – check deposited (the gross amount of the

                                                      check was $207,601.49; $3,794.17 was

                                                      credited to the interest earnings line in the

                                                      TOV Fund)

·        July 20, 2004- $203,807.32 – check deposited (the gross amount of the

                                                      check was $206,043.62; $2,236.60 was

                                                      credited to the interest earnings line in the

                                                      TOV Fund)

·        August 30, 2004- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        September 21, 2004- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        October 4, 2004- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        November 8, 2004- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        November 15, 2004- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        January 10, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        February 7, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        February 8, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        March 21, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        April 11, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        May 16, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        June 10, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        July 12, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        August 15, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        September 13, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        October 13, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        November 10, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

·        December 14, 2005- $101,903.66 – check deposited

 

 

The total rental payments were $5,174,242.72. While there is no indication of the reason for interest amounts being included in the first seven checks, it would seem the interest was to compensate the Town for lost interest earnings for the period between the effective date of the agreement and when the Town started receiving payments.

 

Disbursements to the ValhallaSchool Districtand the Fairview Fire District:

 

·        April 9, 2004- $517,955.00 – date of check to ValhallaSchool District

·        May 7, 2004- $100,00.00 – date of check to Fairview Fire  District

·        June 24, 2005- $728,894.80 – date of check to ValhallaSchool District

·        June 24, 2005- $100,00.00 – date of check to Fairview Fire  District

·        February 10, 2006- $617,301.00 – date of check to ValhallaSchool District

·        May 26, 2006- $100,00.00 – date of check to Fairview Fire  District

 

The total disbursements were $2,164,150.80.

 

 

 

The annual amount credited to the TOV Fund as Rental of Real Property WestHELP:

 

·        Fiscal year 2003 – $816,054.89

·        Fiscal year 2004 – $372,843.96

·        Fiscal year 2005 – $372,843.96

 

The revenues credited were $1,561,742.81.

 

The remaining balance at December 31, 2005was $1,448,349.11, which relate to the ValhallaSchool District- $898,349.29; Fairview Fire District - $124,999.91, and the neighborhoods - $424,999.91.  

 

(The Town has continued to receive monthly payments of $101,903.66 from WestHELP which are credited to the Town’s General Fund, A Fund.)  

 

An amount of $75,000.00 which was reported to have been spent has been misconstrued. In September of 2006, the amount of WestHELP rental payments that would have been available for purposes other than the ValhallaSchool Districtand the

Fairview Fire District was $500,000. After September of 2006, the Town received three more months of rental payments in 2006. This was an additional $25,000 of payments would have been available for purposes other than the ValhallaSchool Districtand the

Fairview Fire District. The $500,000, as of September 2006, plus $25,000, for the three remaining months in 2006, is $525,000. Presuming that the entire amount of the rental payments for 2006 is credited to the General Fund, $100,000 of the $525,000 came from the 2006 rental payments. When the $100,000 is deducted from the $525,000 the amount is $425,000 as indicated above. The assumption was that the amount of $500,000 was reduced to $425,000, because $75,000 was spent which is incorrect.    

 

I trust that this information is helpful. If there are any questions, please let me know.

 

cc: Timothy W. Lewis, Town Attorney

      Bart J. Talamini, Deputy Town Comptroller

       

 

 

           




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