GASB Proposes Improvements in Financial Reporting from State and Local Governments

The Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB), recently issued a proposal seeking change in the way state and local governments report financial information. This initiative is led primarily under Joel Black, the most recently appointed chairman to GASB.

Exposure Draft Updates

The exposure draft marks the first significant proposal made under the new chairman, Joel Black. Improvements outlined in the Exposure Draft center around the efficiency and effectiveness of these financial reports, resulting in improved decision making. GASB summarizes this proposal stating:

“The objective of this proposed Statement is to improve key components of the financial reporting model. Those changes would (1) improve the effectiveness of the financial reporting model in providing information that is essential for decision making and assessing a government’s accountability and (2) address certain application issues.”

Additionally, the exposure draft includes proposals seeking the establishment or modification of existing accounting and financial reporting requirements related to the following topics:

  • Application of the short-term financial resources measurement focus and accrual basis of accounting in governmental funds (replacing the existing current financial resources measurement focus and modified accrual basis of accounting)
  • Management’s discussion and analysis
  • Presentation of governmental fund financial statements
  • Presentation of the proprietary fund statement of revenues, expenses, and changes in fund net position
  • Unusual or infrequent items
  • Budgetary comparison information.

GASB Changes Moving Forward

These proposed improvements will continue to receive feedback from stakeholders and the public before they are officially accepted and implemented. This feedback will come in the form of user forums and public hearings that are currently scheduled for March and April of next Spring. 

Learn more about the Exposure Draft by reading the full proposal from the Government Accounting Standards Board. If you have any questions or concerns regarding these updates, feel free to reach out to Hall & Company for a consultation with our expert accounting team.

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