How to Create a Complex Password and Memorize It

We all hate it. A message pops up on your computer stating that it’s time to change your password. As you try to come up with a unique password for what feels like the tenth time this year, you think to yourself, “how am I supposed to remember all these password changes and what good …

Keep Reading

Importance of financial policies

Financial policies are key to defining financial management practices and establishing internal controls for any government. The Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) makes available the Best Practices for Adopting Financial Policies which stresses the importance of financial policies and their ability to help governments, which can be read here. They state that one of the …

Keep Reading

Proposed Future Changes to Operating Leases

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) issued a proposal last month that may change the way state and local governments report operating leases. The proposal is based on the concept that leases are a method of financing that gives governments the right to use an underlying asset. Even though there currently are disclosures in the …

Keep Reading

Using QuickBooks? Did you review payables before the last check?

Newer versions of QuickBooks will open a dialogue box “Open Bills Exist” and older versions may tell if you have a payable due to a vendor when you are in the check writing window but this is easily overlooked. If you ignore the question and opt to select the “Continue Writing Check” button or you …

Keep Reading

Can a Government Capitalize the Cost of Developing Your Organization’s Website?

Absolutely! However, you must meet a few requirements in order to do so. According to Governmental Accounting Standards Board Statement No. 51 (GASB), “intangible assets are considered internally generated if they are created or produced by the government or an entity contracted by the government.” So, whether you have the IT department develop the website …

Keep Reading

Conflicts of Interest in School and Government Procurement

As many school district business personnel are aware of, Arizona State Statute 38-509 and Arizona USFR guidelines require each District to maintain a conflict of interest file disclosing substantial conflicts of interest with their employees and board members. However, this can be taken a step further to help protect a City, Town or School District …

Keep Reading

Closing and Locking a Period in QuickBooks

Have you ever mistakenly misdated a transaction in QuickBooks? Has your auditor ever asked you why equity did not match the prior year’s audited financial statements? Since QuickBooks does not require you to close your books after year-end, changing, adding, or deleting entries made in a prior fiscal year is a common mistake. So you …

Keep Reading

GASB 68 Deferred Employer Contributions to Pensions

Last month I discussed the timing of specific pension related dates in valuing, measuring and reporting your pension related amounts for the full accrual basis statements in accordance with GASB Statement 68. This month I am discussing the employer contributions to the plan, and how they should be reported for the full accrual based statements. …

Keep Reading

How Does GASB Measure Fair Value?

In response to stakeholders requesting more clarity regarding Fair Value standards, GASB developed new guidance by issuing Statement No. 72. The new guidance is designed to provide additional information regarding the measurement of Assets and Liabilities and to help financial statement readers make better, more informed decisions. GASB Statement No. 72, Fair Value Measurement and …

Keep Reading

Importance of Controls Over Fixed Assets

Are your year-end financial statements accurately representing your fixed assets? Deficiencies in the recording of fixed assets can often result in inaccurate financial reporting. The area of fixed assets is way too often considered as a lower priority by management, thus easily disregarded. Fixed asset control procedures are not always performed as well as they …

Keep Reading