IDA audit scored well

JOHNSTOWN – The Fulton County Industrial Development Agency received the best opinion it could from a 2013 independent audit of the agency, an official said recently.

IDA Executive Director James Mraz told his board Wednesday at the Fort Johnstown Annex that Gloversville-based West & Company completed an audit of the agency’s 2013 financial statements. He said the independent firm issued an “unqualified opinion” – meaning it was the best opinion the IDA could receive.

“The [IDA] Audit Committee met with West & Company to review this,” he said. “It is a fairly simple report.”

The full IDA board on Wednesday accepted the audited financial statement, authorizing Mraz to file it with the state’s Public Authorities Reporting Information System.

Mraz said the audit found in 2013, the IDA operated with a $39,000 deficit. He said the agency had a lack of projects and industrial bonding applications to process last year.

He said the auditors also established a formulation for the value of the land left at the Crossroads Industrial Park and Crossroads Business Park, both in Gloversville, and the Johnstown Industrial Park.

In another matter, the IDA authorized the payment of seven town of Perth 2014 fire tax invoices totaling $1,149 for the Tryon property the agency now owns. Mraz said the IDA received seven individual tax bills each for $164.22.

Mraz the information was reviewed by agency attorney Kara Lais and the IDA is still trying to understand why there was seven individual bills with the same amount and there wasn’t a single tax bill for only one property. Mraz said Perth Assessor David Walendziak said he had “no idea” why that was the case. He said the assessor indicated the methodology for paying the Tryon fire tax bill was established before he took office.

“The long and short of it is we have to pay these tax bills,” Mraz said.

He said the assessor intends to meet with county Real Property Tax Services Agency Director Peter Galarneau to see if the IDA can receive a single tax bill instead of seven.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at