Do you have news or updates that WFOA Members would benefit from?

Email: Bret Brodersen, Professional Rules and Operational Standards Committee Chair


FREE GASB Statement No. 87 – Leases Standard Webinars

KPMG has posted three (3) free recorded webinars regarding GASB Statement No. 87 – Leases.

A Call to Action: Implementing the New GASB Lease Standard – Part 1

A Call to Action: Implementing the New GASB Lease Standard – Part 2

A Call to Action: Implementing the New GASB Lease Standard – Part 3

Added November 25, 2019, By Stacie Tellers


Pension Accounting: 2019 Participating Employer Financial Information (PEFI) now available!

The Washington State Department of Retirement Systems has published the 2019 Participating Employer Financial Information (PEFI) report!

Click here to be directed to the www.drs.wa.gov PEFI webpage.

Added October 21, 2019, By Stacie Tellers


Help the GASB Collect Implementation Information About Statement 84

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board is making significant changes to how it collects information from governments about the effort required to implement major statements. The changes will make the process timelier and result in more accurate information to support the GASB’s standards-setting activities. The new process is described in a two-page article recently published on the GASB website.

Under the new process, the GASB will invite governments to volunteer to participate, in addition to its usual practice of inviting a random sample of governments. If you are interested in participating in the process for the implementation of Statement No. 84, Fiduciary Activities, please click here to register.

What does participation entail?

Participating in the new process will not require much effort or time on your part, though the potential benefits to the standards-setting process could be substantial. You will be asked to do three things:

  1. Register to participate and answer some questions about the staff hours and non-staff costs associated with preparing your audited financial report for the year before you implement Statement 84. (If your government is still in that fiscal year, the GASB subsequently will send you a link to a website for reporting that information after the fiscal year has ended.) The GASB also will ask you to send it a copy of that financial report.
  2. Keep track of the staff hours and non-staff costs specifically associated with implementing Statement 84 as part of preparing your audited financial statements for your first fiscal year ending December 31, 2019 or later. After that fiscal year, the GASB will send you a link to a website where you can report those staff hours and non-staff costs, upload a copy of your audited financial report, and tell the GASB about any parts of Statement 84 that you found particularly difficult to apply.
  3. Keep track of the staff hours and non-staff costs in the second year of applying Statement 84. After that fiscal year, the GASB again will send you a link to a website where you can report staff hours and non-staff costs and upload a copy of your audited financial report.

The GASB understands that most governments do not have a system that allows them to track hours and costs related to a particular statement. However, the GASB hopes that by engaging governments before they implement the standards, governments will be able to keep informal records that will enable them to make an informed and more accurate estimate of the staff hours and non-staff costs required to implement.

The GASB plans to conduct several teleconferences during the summer and early fall to answer questions participants may have about the process and what staff hours and non-staff costs should be included. More information about those teleconferences will be available soon.

Governments that complete the process will receive an official letter from the GASB chairman, thanking them for their participation in this important initiative.

How can you volunteer to participate?

You can volunteer by visiting this website and providing your contact information. Depending on the month in which your fiscal year ends, you also may be asked to answer some questions about staff hours and non-staff costs. You will be able to save the survey and return later to answer those questions if you need additional time.

(republished from NASACT Weekly News Update – July 1)

Added July 3, 2019, By Stacie Tellers


Introducing a new name…

The Legislative and Professional Standards Committee has a new name: Professional Rules and Operational Standards Committee, aka PROS.

Check out our updated committee charter and other committee information here: PROS Committee Page

Added June 14, 2019, By Stacie Tellers


Fiduciary Activities – Reporting Standards Update 

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) has released and Exposure Draft of the Proposed Implementation Guide- Fiduciary Activities!

Check out the proposed implementation guide here: Exposure Draft – Proposed Implementation Guide, Fiduciary Activities

  • Exposure Drafts are open for public comment. Written comments are due February 28, 2019.

The Exposure Draft is related to the implementation of GASB Statement No. 84 – Fiduciary Activities, which is effective for reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2018. The financial reports will be impacted as follows:

Fiscal Year End  Financial Reporting Year
December 31st  1/1/19 – 12/31/19
June 30th  7/1/19 – 6/30/20
August 31st  9/1/19 – 8/31/20

 

The Exposure Draft of the Proposed Implementation Guide- Fiduciary Activities contains several questions and answers related to the Statement and are subject to final review by the GASB Board based on feedback received via written comments.

Added January 7, 2019; By: Stacie Tellers


*FREE* Moss Adams Webcast – Leases

Moss Adams is providing a FREE webcast regarding the Governmental Accounting Standards Board’s (GASB) Statement Number 87, Leases, which significantly changes accounting and reporting requirements for lease arrangements. The standard is effective for reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2019, meaning it’s a good time to begin planning for implementation.

Join Moss Adams for this FREE webcast addressing important aspects of GASB 87 and its potential impacts on governmental entities—including changes to lease recognition, measurement, and related disclosures for government lessees and lessors. Some key topics they will discuss include the following:

  • Overall scope and objectives of the new standard
  • Timing, transition, and impacts of the changes on your entity
  • Insight into how lessees and lessors can prepare for implementation

This LIVE and FREE webcast will provide 1 CPE for your active attendance in the webcast. Please visit Moss Adams for registration and more details.

Added December 13, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


*FREE* GASB Webcast – Preliminary Views, Financial Reporting Model Improvements

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) has posted the recorded version of their November 7, 2018 webcast that provides information on the proposals in the GASB Preliminary Views, Financial Reporting Model Improvements (Preliminary Views). The areas covered will include:

  1. Recognition concepts and application for governmental funds, including alternative views
  2. Presentation of governmental fund financial statements
  3. Presentation of proprietary fund financial statements
  4. Budgetary comparison information schedule
  5. Communication of major component unit information
  6. Schedule of government-wide expenses by natural classification
  7. Audience question-and-answer session.

The *FREE* webcast intends to allow participants to gain an understanding of:

  1. The scope of the proposed improvements to the financial reporting model
  2. The major proposals in the Preliminary Views
  3. How to provide feedback to the GASB on the proposals.

This is a recorded version of the live webcast therefore there is no CPE or live chat functions available. This is a great opportunity to hear from GASB regarding their Preliminary Views on the Financial Reporting Model Improvements! Click here to access the webcast!

Added December 7, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


 

Study of the Studies – an Office of the State Treasurer’s Report on the Idea of a State Bank

The Office of the State Treasurer has published the Study of the Studies report on their website. This report is the culmination of thorough review of all the previous studies completed by other states and municipalities on the topic the “State Bank”.

Access the report here: The Office of the State Treasurer’s Study of the Study

Added November 5, 2018: By Stacie Tellers on behalf of the Office of the State Treasurer


Other Post-Employment Benefits (OPEB) – Employer Reporting Requirements are Happening NOW!

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) Statement 75, Accounting and Reporting for OPEB is effective for the Reporting Year 2018 (this year!). What is OPEB? OPEB, or post-employment benefits other than pension, includes benefits such as healthcare provided through a pension plan or separately (medical, dental, vision, hearing, etc.); and other benefits when provided separately from a pension plan such as: life insurance, long-term care, disability, and more.

Statement 75 was issued in June 2015 and establishes accounting and financial reporting requirements by state and local governments for postemployment benefits other than pensions. Statement 75 is the employer reporting statement, GASB issued Statement 74 for the reporting requirements for OPEB Plans (“trusted or in a trust per GASB Standards” OPEB Plans).

Associations across the country have been providing training, implementation guidance, articles, webinar, and more regarding the implementation of the OPEB Statements. In Washington, the Office of the Washington State Auditor (SAO) and the Office of the State Actuary have been working together to provide implementation guidance and tools for Washington governments.

The State Actuary, on November 1st, released its highly anticipated OPEB Calculation Tool! This tool is available to employers who cover their employees under the Public Employees’ Benefit Board (PEBB) ONLY. Employers covered by PEBB can use the tool if they have LESS THAN 100 active and retired employees in the PEBB health insurance (not including covered spouses).

To find out more about the State Actuary’s Alternate Measurement Method Tool, please visit their website: Office of the State Actuary OPEB Information

The State actuary is working on a LEOFF 1 specific tool and plans to release it in early 2019.

SAO has been working hard to provide notes templates, frequently asked questions answers, and additional information in regards to the OPEB Statements. Please visit their website to view all information that could impact your government: Office of the Washington State Auditor OPEB Information

 Added November 2, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


FREE Training (Webinar) Regarding GASB 87 – Leases

The implementation of GASB Statement 87 – Leases is quickly approaching. Are you ready? Do you need more information?

Crowe – a public accounting, consulting, and technology firm, has put together a 55 minute webinar on this very subject. The webinar provides a summary of the statement and is a great resource to help you get started or to get more information.

This webinar is FREE and available on Crowe’s website: Click here to view the webinar

Added September 28, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


GASB Clarifies Guidance
on Majority Equity Interests

Norwalk, CT, September 4, 2018—The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) has issued guidance clarifying the accounting and financial reporting requirements for a state or local government’s majority equity interest in an organization that remains legally separate after acquisition.

A public hospital’s acquisition of a rehabilitation center that remains legally separate after acquisition is an example of the type of transaction the new guidance addresses.

Under Statement No. 90, Majority Equity Interests, a government’s majority equity interest in a legally separate organization should be reported as an investment if that equity interest meets the GASB’s definition of an investment. In many instances, a majority equity interest that meets the definition of an investment should be measured using the equity method.

Statement No. 72, Fair Value Measurement and Application, defines an investment as “a security or other asset that (a) a government holds primarily for the purpose of income or profit and (b) has a present service capacity based solely on its ability to generate cash or to be sold to generate cash.”

For a majority equity interest in a legally separate entity that does not meet the definition of an investment, Statement 90 requires a government to report the legally separate entity as a component unit.

Statement 90 also establishes guidance for remeasuring assets and liabilities of wholly acquired governmental organizations that remain legally separate. That guidance brings the reporting of those acquisitions in line now with existing standards that apply to acquisitions that do not remain legally separate.

Statement 90 is available on the GASB website, www.gasb.org.

<Copied from: GASB Media Advisory 09/04/18>

Added September 5, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) Approves Amendments to Disclosure Rules

The amendments approved by the SEC to the Municipal Securities Disclosures on Monday, August 20th have been 17 months in the making. The two new triggering events that will require issuers to make a public disclosure within ten (10) business days of the event are:

    •  Any incurrence of a financial obligation of the issuer or obligated person, if material, or agreement to covenants, events of default, remedies, priority rights, or other similar terms of a financial obligation of the issuer or obligated person, any of which affect security holders, if material; and
    • Any default, event of acceleration, termination event, modification of terms, or other similar events under the terms of the financial obligation of the issuer or obligated person, any of which reflect financial difficulties.

The term “financial obligation” means:

    • (i) any debt obligation (including a lease arrangement that operates as a vehicle to borrow money);
    • (ii) any derivative instrument entered into in connection with, or pledged as security or a source of payment for, an existing or planned debt obligation; or
    • (iii) any guarantee of (i) or (ii).
      • Note: “financial obligation” does not include the securities in which a final official statement has been provided to the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MRSB)’s Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA) that are consistent with Rule 15c2-12. (i.e. the normal bond issuance)

The SEC’s decision to implement the triggering events and amend Rule 15c2-12 is to ensure the timely and public availability of various disclosures regarding municipal securities to the investors in municipal securities and other users of the information via EMMA.

MSRB provides information on all the continuing disclosure requirements (required and voluntary disclosures), training on the EMMA Dataport, deadlines, format requirements, and more. MSRB is working to update their information to incorporate the newest amendments to the disclosure requirements. For access to the MSRB Continuing Disclosures website, click HERE.

For more information regarding continuing disclosure requirements:

Added August 23, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


 

U.S. Supreme Court Issues Favorable Decision in Remote Sales Tax Case

On June 21, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., overturning the outdated physical presence standard. This long-anticipated decision clears the way for state and local governments to enforce existing sales and use tax laws on remote sales. For well over two decades, GFOA and other state and local government organizations have pursued a simplified framework of sales and use tax administration to address the ever evolving and growing online retail marketplace. Until this year, the focus has primarily been on Congress where organizations like GFOA have advocated for legislation such as the Marketplace Fairness Act. Without the authority to impose current sales and use tax laws on many remote and online purchases, states and local governments have lost billions of vital revenue for public services every year.

Upon release of the decision, GFOA joined others in the state and local government community and issued a statement. “State and local organizations applaud the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision recognizing that the 1992 Quill ruling put Main Street retailers at a competitive disadvantage to remote sellers and the efforts by states to simplify the sales tax collection process and giving those states remote sales tax collection authority. For 26 years Congress has failed to act and through the efforts of Justice Anthony Kennedy, the federal government has finally recognized the changing nature of commerce and state efforts to simplify the collection process.”

View the Press Release
GFOA remains committed to finding a solution that simplifies and streamlines the collection of sales taxes that makes sense for all stakeholders involved and finally provides a level playing field that treats all businesses alike, whether selling from a brick-and-mortar store or completely online.

Published on GFOA: GFOA Website – U.S. Supreme Court Decision

Added July 3, 2018; By: Stacie Tellers


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