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An open letter to New Canaan officials

Published 10:27 am, Sunday, March 10, 2013
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The Freedom of Information Act is designed to ensure that citizens have rights to access public records.

I am requesting that the Board of Education publicly release on its website a JH Cohn report issued on April 12, 2012, in which this accounting firm reported on a series of serious flaws in the internal standards employed by the New Canaan Public Schools regarding the use of federal and state grants between 2004 and 2012.

Last week, this taxpayer reported by email to the Board of Selectmen, Board of Finance, Town Council and legal counsel the following analysis of the "faulty" reporting of income and expenses to the Board of Selectmen:

The NCPS budget presentation to the Town Council on Jan. 24, 2013, failed to mention the $4 million surplus in funds which are believed to be sequestered in bank account maintained by the Board of Ed;

Except for the NCPS, all other 2013-14 departmental budgets submitted to the Town Council for consideration/approval use a proper method for analysis of 2012 expenses accrued from July to December 2012 and a projection of expenses through June 30, 2013;

The NCPS budget proposal for 2013-14 (approved by the BOE) is built by just increasing the 2012-13 approved budgets to come up with their requests for 2013-14 proposed budgets;

The proposed NCPS salaries for the 2013-14 budget are believed to be overstated by $2.5 million because the 2013 budget overstated the 2012 actual salaries;

There was no "income" reported from the BOE in their presentation from more than ten revenue sources identified in my email last week to town governance bodies;

The rental fees for NCPS facilities haven't changed since 1997.

Michael Nowacki

New Canaan