10th Annual National Leadership Conference Registration Open
Register today for AGA’s 10th Annual National Leadership Conference (NLC) being held Feb. 16-17, 2012 at the Ronald Reagan Building & International Trade Center in Washington D.C.
In today’s challenging economic times, now more than ever, government financial managers and accountability professionals must stay abreast of the latest developments, policies and issues affecting our citizens, and continually enhance their skills. Staying up to date on new regulations, while maintaining a clear vision of government transformation, can be accomplished through the best training.
The NLC offers a cost-effective way of doing just that. Earn 14 CPE hours, learn from top-notch speakers, discuss the latest research, discover innovative management techniques, and see technological tools that can help your agency achieve its mission.
For Attendees—Register today!
For Exhibitors & Sponsors—The NLC is the perfect place to reach your target audience. Space is limited.
Reserve your booth space.
Consider becoming a sponsor.
Upcoming Audio Conferences
Nov. 16: Using XBRL to Improve Accountability, Transparency and Efficiency in Government
Jan. 11: Getting a Handle on Internal Controls
March 7: Data Mining to Prioritize Investigations of Contract Fraud
April 18: Find Strength in Numbers: Sampling Techniques to Improve Financial Audit, Control and Program Performance
2011—2012 Audio Conference Schedule
Network with AGA Online Anytime
Become a Fan of AGA on Facebook
Create a Linkedin Profile
Follow AGA on Twitter
Visit AGA on GovLoop
Nomination Deadline Extended for AGA National Awards
Help AGA acknowledge financial professionals at the federal, state and local level by submitting a nomination for AGA's national awards. Nominees are not required to be AGA members. The deadline for submissions has been extended to Friday, Nov. 18, 2011.These awards will be presented at AGA’s 10th Annual National Leadership Conference, Feb. 16–17, 2012 in Washington, D.C. View the complete list of awards here.
AGA Advertising Opportunities!
Advertise in AGA's electronic newsletters—TOPICS and AGA Today! Get maximum exposure and build your brand. Find out what's available in an upcoming issue. Click here for all the information you need to run your ad. Or, you can contact Marie Force.
November 7, 2011 • News from the Profession
AGA Today is Brought to You by AGA Corporate Partner Clifton Gunderson
Clifton Gunderson's offices in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, MD, and Arlington, VA, are seeking experienced professionals to join our public sector practice. Ideal candidates will have 3 yrs of Public Accounting or equivalent audit experience along with a BA/BS in Accounting/IT/IS, CPA, CGFM, CISA and/or CISSP. Duties will include audits of Federal entities, State & Local audits (GASB), A-133 audits, and compliance auditing. To apply please e-mail Michael.Armstrong@cliftoncpa.com
State and Local News
NY Group Seeks Local Government Mandate Relief
A coalition of New York advocacy groups has put out a six-point plan they say would help relieve local governments from state mandates. Labor unions signaled they're ready to aggressively fight the proposal. The supporters of the proposal—including the state Business Council, Farm Bureau, School Boards Association, the Westchester County Association and seven others—said the plan would help governments and school districts live under the state's new 2 percent property-tax cap, which takes effect Jan. 1. "I think we're already seeing some of the difficulties that local communities are having in trying to operating under the cap, and we need to have this kind of local relief available to them," said Heather Briccetti, acting president of the Business Council. The plan outlines six major steps the groups want to see Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature take. Among them are new, less-generous pension plans for new public workers, reform of a law that requires multiple contractors on construction projects and changing the state's arbitration laws for union negotiations. —WGRZ. Read more.
California Governor Shuts Government Transparency Website
Gov. Jerry Brown has shut down the government transparency website created by his predecessor, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, as a repository for financial disclosure statements and other records. A note on the website, www.transparency.ca.gov, says information once available on the site can be found on other state websites and furnishes the links. But open government advocates objected to the website's closure, claiming citizens will find it more difficult to track spending. Many of the documents contained on the website – including information about state contracts, audits and salaries – can be found on other sites. But the transparency site, which was created in 2009 and shut down Tuesday, also included travel expense claims submitted by senior agency officials and employees of the Governor's Office. Brown's office said Wednesday that travel records can be requested under California's Open Records Act. Elizabeth Ashford, a spokeswoman for the Democratic governor, cited the time and cost of coping and uploading those documents. —David Siders, The Sacramento Bee. Read more.
AGA Today is Brought to You by AGA Corporate Partner Becker
It’s what you need to know – Now.
Announcing the new Becker Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Subscription Program.
Timely and relevant knowledge you need to stay ahead in today’s fast changing business world.
To view over 150 course offerings or take a free test drive visit becker.com/cpe.
For additional information, contact John Gioeli.
Budget Director: Stop Beating Up on Federal Workers
The White House budget director has a message for federal employees: Don't take it personally if you don’t get a pay raise soon. Office of Management and Budget Director Jacob J. Lew said it’s too soon to know whether federal employees should expect a pay bump in fiscal 2013 after a two-year pay freeze, or whether they might need to start paying more for their benefits. But he did say that Washington—and the country—should stop using federal employees as scapegoats in conversations about federal largesse. “I think that it’s sometimes misunderstood as a vote of confidence on federal workers as opposed to a budgetary necessity,” Lew said. “Wherever we go, on whether we can afford a pay raise or not, I think it’s important for federal workers not to be treated as if they’re the problem. They’re working hard, they’re doing extraordinarily important work, and I don’t think they get enough respect.” —Ed O’Keefe, The Washington Post. Read more.
DoD Performance Group: Rate Civilian Employees as Pass or Fail
A Defense Department working group on performance management has recommended that all civilian employees be rated on a pass-fail system and that supervisors provide constant feedback to employees about their performance. But at least one expert said the group's report, called "New Beginnings," falls far short of what is necessary, and that the pass-fail system is a bad idea. "The idea of pass-fail has been used a number of times, and was rejected years ago," said Howard Risher, a consultant on federal pay and performance issues. "Usually, only a small number of people ever fail. So you end up with no consequences associated with ratings." Congress in 2009 ordered Defense to come up with a new "fair, credible and transparent" performance management system to replace the controversial National Security Personnel System (NSPS), which Congress directed to be terminated. —Stephen Losey, Federal Times. Read more.
AGA Today is Brought to You by AGA Corporate Partner Accenture
Payment and vendor pricing errors can cost 0.10 percent or more of total spending. Organizations around the world rely on the Accenture Improper Payment solution to prevent such costly mistakes. Our solution quickly addresses the Office of Management and Budget’s call to prevent improper payments, taking federal agencies beyond simply reacting and into post-payment recovery. The solution proactively prevents overpayments, inaccurate payments and lost funding with advanced analytics before payments are made.
See our success stories.
Accenture: Delivering Public Service for the Future
Private Sector News
Gender Gap on Wages Slow to Close
First, there was the “mancession” that made the downturn much worse for men. Then, what my colleague Catherine Rampell has called the “he-recovery,” which has put more men than women back to work. What has remained consistent is that women remain on the wrong side of the wage gap. Even with the same college and professional degrees, men earn more than women. And among so-called creative class workers like architects, teachers, artists, engineers, bankers and journalists, men earn much more than women, even though more women hold such jobs. It’s similar at the bottom end of the scale. According to a report issued Thursday by the United States Government Accountability Office, a higher proportion of women finish high school than men, a milestone that is a minimum requirement for any job mobility. Women — especially younger women — are also completing bachelor’s degrees at higher rates than men. Yet they represent a higher proportion of low-wage workers, defined in the report as those who earn hourly wage rates that put them in the bottom 20 percent of the work force. —Mokoto Rich, The New York Times. Read more.
AGA Today is Brought to You by AGA Corporate Partner IBM
Cognos FSR automates each step in the budgeting, planning, performance reporting processes. Along with Cognos TM1, IBM's integrated corporate performance platform, users can eliminate the manual, error-prone spreadsheet processes and significantly enhance controls and visibility at each step. Visit the website to learn more.
Download the IBM Cognos CAFR Datasheet.
Accounting Standards News
New GASB Bound Editions Now Available
The 2011-2012 editions of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board's (GASB) annual bound editions are now available. The three titles—the Codification, Original Pronouncements and the Comprehensive Implementation Guide—may be ordered individually or at a discount for two- and three-title sets. Additional information is available at www.gasb.org by clicking on the Store tab.
Federal Budget Issues Focus of Nov. 16 Symposium
AGA Executive Director Relmond Van Daniker, DBA, CPA, is set to speak at the Nov. 16 fall symposium of the American Association for Budget and Program Analysis. The symposium theme is "Austerity: Budget, Analysis and the Great Recession," and the event is designed to bring budget and program professionals together across government and the private sector to share strategies related to fiscal constraints, agency priorities and transparency expectations. The conference is set for 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Capital Hilton Hotel at 16th and K Streets, N.W., Washington, D.C. Register and find the latest information.