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Belle Terre praised for its handling of finances

Belle Terre earned high marks from state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli’s office in an audit of the village’s finances.

The comptroller examined records from June 1, 2011, to Dec. 31, 2012, and found the village government carefully inspected claims for payment.

“Generally, the Board conducts a thorough and deliberate audit of claims before payments are authorized to ensure that Village funds are being spent efficiently,” according to a report issued June 7 by Andrew A. SanFilippo, executive deputy comptroller. “Generally, we found that claims were presented in a uniform and organized manner and properly recorded and supported with appropriate documentation. The Board members initialed all claims to signify their review and approval for payment, and the Mayor signed all abstracts. Our examination revealed only minor deficiencies, which we discussed with Village officials.”

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Mayor Ted Lucki said the main reason for the robust financial health of the village, which has an annual budget of about $1 million, is the scrutiny of each claim.

“We look at every bill and all the trustees sign every bill, and they realize, ‘Why do we spend $800 on filling a pothole?’ So the next time it comes around, we check out the pothole,” he said. “It’s more tedious but it’s more effective.”

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