State Comptroller’s Office auditing Riverhead Town finances

The New York State Comptroller’s Office has begun an audit to look into undisclosed areas in the town’s finances, officials confirmed last week.

The audit will look into areas highlighted by a recently completed “risk assessment,” said state spokesman Mark Johnson.

Mr. Johnson said the state could not discuss which areas of the town’s finances the audit will look into.

Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter had invited the audit during his first term, but the state had required that the town complete previous audits that were never finished before a new audit was started.

Those audits —for the years 2008, 2009, and 2010 — were all completed, Mr. Walter said.

“Early this year I went in and saw them, asked them to come in to do the audit in the spring,” Mr. Walter said, adding that the state said they’d need to do a risk assessment first.

Mr. Walter said the assessment was supposed to last two to three weeks; due to the complexity of the town’s different districts like water and sewer, state workers finished the assessment more than two months later.

Mr. Walter said he will welcome the state’s audit results.

“I’m a big boy,” he said. “If the comptroller comes in and says something was done wrong, even though I may not have been the reason, I take responsibility.”

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