The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) issued GASB Statement No. 84, Fiduciary Activities the last week in January 2017. Obviously, this is breaking news – stop the presses! The standard is the culmination of a long-term, wide-ranging project to address accounting and financial reporting for the following:
GASB Statement No. 68)
With GASB Statement No. 84, the GASB provides definitive guidance on how all fiduciary activities of a governmental entity should be reported. It is now definitive that assets that are associated with a fiduciary activity and are legally entrusted should be reported in one of three specific fiduciary fund types. Those assets that are not legally entrusted but still meet the definition of a fiduciary activity are to be reported in a separate fiduciary fund type. This does clear some inconsistencies with fiduciary fund reporting currently where entrusted and non-entrusted assets may be reported in the same fund type (although many of us probably never lost much sleep over it).
Everyone is well aware, or should be, that the cost of retiring is escalating almost by the minute. There are financial advisors and estate planners who solely focus on enabling us to have a shot at a decent retirement, relatively free of financial concern. Employers in both the public and private sectors are recognizing mammoth liabilities for the pension resources they are holding in trust for their employees. But, are employees all that are going to retire from a state or local government? Is that the only long-term cost that a governmental entity is going to be liable for (above and beyond normal indebtedness)? The answer is obviously no or I would not be writing this post.
This is the exact question that I was asked recently.
“Are all North Carolina, county, ad valorem, real estate appraisers subject to the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP)?”
This could be a very short blog post. The answer to the question is, “no”. But a different question, “Should all North Carolina county ad valorem appraisers comply with USPAP?” leads to a more in depth discussion. The answer to that question is, “yes”. I believe if you act as an appraiser, you should comply with USPAP.
There are many worthy assessment-related questions posed on PTAX and elsewhere that I hope we can address during the life of this new blog. But given our blog title, Death and Taxes, and a topic looming around us that some have coined Dark Stores, it seems like a dark and creepy coincidence to start right here.
Benjamin Frankin, (1706-1790) , North American printer, publisher, writer, scientist, inventor and statesman. Source: Wkipedia
Our new Constitution is now established, and has an appearance that promises permanency; but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.
Benjamin Franklin, in a letter to Jean-Baptiste Leroy, 1789