"ORDA's continuing struggles to maintain fiscal balance show that the authority needs to explore new ways to save costs and commit to sound financial planning going forward," DiNapoli said. "ORDA needs to develop a realistic and detailed multiyear financial plan to build its cash reserves and maintain operations for the economic benefit of local communities, as well as the tens of thousands of people who enjoy its attractions."
ORDA operates the Whiteface and Gore Mountain Ski Centers in the Adirondacks, the Olympic facilities in
DiNapoli's auditors found that while state law requires ORDA to establish a fund to provide for capital improvements and major repairs to the Olympic facilities, and requires a deposit of 25 percent of operating profits each year into the fund, ORDA had no profits from operations and had no balance in the fund.
As a consequence, ORDA is dependent on the state and other public entities for capital contributions and grants. For example, the
DiNapoli's auditors examined ORDA's revenue stream, particularly corporate sponsorships, finding the authority could take additional actions to increase its income.
DiNapoli's auditors found:
* In one sponsorship with a vehicle manufacturer, ORDA receives use of up to 12 vehicles for three years at a value of
* ORDA claimed it used
* Three of the seven sponsors reviewed received more stays at the ORDA-leased condominium than called for in their agreements, including one that received 45 excess stays during the audit period. In total, the three sponsors received an additional 54 nights, valued at
* ORDA officials did not request or receive
DiNapoli's auditors also reviewed a sample of 29 procurements totaling
DiNapoli recommended ORDA:
* Develop a more accurate method for estimating expense and revenue amounts used in the multiyear financial plan to ensure that the budgets are balanced, operating expenses are closely scrutinized during the year, and estimates are reviewed to determine that they are still valid;
* Maintain support for budget assumptions and calculations as required;
* Conduct a top-to-bottom review of ORDA's organization and spending to identify cost-containment opportunities;
* Award contracts on a competitive basis and fully document any waivers permitting non-competitive rocurements including the reason(s) for the decision; and
* Establish and follow procedures for the corporate sponsorships which, at a minimum:
* Develop consistent evaluation procedures to determine whether a sponsorship is beneficial for ORDA, and retain documentation of the evaluation;
* Track to ensure all in-kind trade items due to ORDA through sponsorship agreements are received and used for an ORDA business purpose; and
* Track ORDA's sponsorship responsibilities to ensure ORDA does not compensate sponsors beyond the terms of their agreements.
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