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:
- Pension plan assets that are entrusted (GASB Statement No. 67 and
- Pension plan assets that are not entrusted (GASB Statement No. 73)
- Other postemployment plans (OPEB) assets that are either entrusted or not entrusted (GASB Statement No. 74 and GASB Statement No. 75)
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).