New York City Comptroller

The Office of Comptroller of New York City is the chief fiscal officer and chief auditing officer of the city. The comptroller is elected, citywide, to a four-year term and can hold office for two consecutive terms. The current comptroller is Democrat Scott Stringer, the former Borough President of Manhattan. Stringer was elected on November 5, 2013.

Comptroller of the City of New York
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Seal of the Comptroller of the City of New York
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Scott Stringer

since January 1, 2014
Term length4 years (renewable)
Constituting instrumentNew York City Charter
Formation1801 (1898 consolidated City)
First holderSelah Strong (1802–1805)
SuccessionSecond in the New York City mayoral line of succession
WebsiteNew York City Office of the Comptroller website


The comptroller is responsible for auditing the performance and finances of city agencies, making recommendations regarding proposed contracts, issuing reports on the state of the city economy, marketing and selling municipal bonds, and managing city debt. The comptroller also "is the custodian and investment advisor to the Boards" of the five pension funds which are collectively referred to as "NYC Public Pension Funds" or "New York City pension funds".[1][2] The funds collectively amounted to US$158,700,000,000 as of September 30, 2014.[2] The comptroller's regulations are compiled in title 44 of the New York City Rules.


The office was created as an appointive office in 1801. Thirty years later, the comptroller became head of the department of finance. In 1884 the office became elective, and in 1938 the comptroller became head of a separate, independent department of the City's government. Until it was found unconstitutional in 1989, the comptroller served on the eight-member New York City Board of Estimate, which was composed of the Mayor of New York City, the comptroller and the president of the New York City Council, each of whom was elected citywide and had two votes, and the five Borough presidents, each having one vote.

If vacancies should simultaneously occur in the offices of Mayor of New York City and New York City Public Advocate (formerly president of the city council or board of aldermen), the comptroller would become acting mayor.[3] These have been the three offices elected citywide, so traditional practice has tried to balance a winning three-candidate ticket among the city's different ethnic, religious and political interests (and, more recently, between the sexes). But, while there is a delicate interaction between the campaigns for the three offices, the actual election results can sometimes differ quite markedly.

2009 electionEdit

The Democratic nominee in the 2009 general election, John Liu won 76% of the citywide vote on Tuesday, November 3. The Republican nominee, Joseph Mendola, won 19.3%; the Conservative nominee, Stuart Avrick, 2.5%; and others 2.3%.[4][5][6]

2013 electionEdit

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer won the September 10, 2013 Democratic primary with 52% of the vote, defeating former New York State Governor, Eliot Spitzer, who had been forced to resign as governor over various scandals.[7] Former Wall Street financier John Burnett was unopposed as the Republican candidate in 2013.[8] The Libertarian Party has nominated Hesham El-Meligy as their candidate for the office. In a prior convention, since declared invalid, they had nominated Kristin Davis, who decided not to challenge the new convention's outcome.[citation needed]


Comptrollers of the City of New York before Consolidation (1898)Edit

Comptrollers of the City of New York since Consolidation (1898)Edit


  1. ^ "NYC Public Pension Funds". The New York City Comptroller's Office. Retrieved 8 January 2015.
  2. ^ a b Lopez, Luciana (7 January 2015). Adler, Leslie (ed.). "New York City pension funds moved $4.9 billion out of Pimco in 2014". Wall Str. J. – via Reuters.
  3. ^ "The Mayor" (trade) |chapter-format= requires |chapter-url= (help). What makes New York City run? : a citizen's guide to how city government works (Third ed.). New York, N.Y.: League of Women Voters of the City of New York Education Fund. 2001. pp. 30–31. ISBN 0-916130-02-9.
  4. ^ The New York Times coverage of the 2009 NYC Comptroller race, September 29, 2009; retrieved September 26, 2013.
  5. ^ Coverage of the 2009 NYC Comptroller race,
  6. ^ 2009 New York City Comptroller election results Archived 2009-11-07 at the Wayback Machine, The New York Times, published and retrieved November 3, 2009.
  7. ^ Eliot Spitzer fails in his New York political comeback attempt, Reuters, published and retrieved September 11, 2013.
  8. ^ "Vigilant Squirrel Brigade: Meet the GOP candidate for NYC Comptroller-2013". 2013-06-28.


External linksEdit