Government Accounting


GASB issued Statement no. 46, Net Assets Restricted by Enabling Legislation, an amendment of GASB Statement no. 34 ( www.gasb.org/news/nr123004A.html ). The subject legislation authorizes the raising of new resources but imposes limits on how they may be used. The guidance, which is effective for periods beginning after June 15, 2005, clarifies that external parties—for example, citizens or the judiciary—can legally enforce such laws in order to compel a government to use resources only as stipulated in their enabling legislation.

GASB also issued a technical bulletin, Recognition of Pension and Other Postemployment Benefit [OPEB] Expenditures/Expense and Liabilities by Cost-Sharing Employer ( www.gasb.org/news/nr123004B.html ), that clarifies the application of requirements regarding accounting for employers’ contractually required contributions to cost-sharing pension and OPEB plans issued in Statement no. 27, Accounting for Pensions by State and Local Governmental Employers, and Statement no. 45, Accounting and Financial Reporting by Employers for Postemployment Benefits Other Than Pensions, respectively. The bulletin addresses questions raised and encourages cost-sharing employers to apply those statements’ recognition requirements. Both publications can be ordered from the GASB order department at 800-748-0659 or online at http://store.yahoo.com/gasbpubs/publications.html .

The Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board (FASAB) issued two statements of federal financial accounting standards (SFFAS) ( www.fasab.gov/standards.html ). SFFAS 27, Identifying and Reporting Earmarked Funds, clarifies the term trust fund, which, in the federal budget, pertains to nonfiduciary assets—mostly government-owned assets intended to fully or partially finance specific federal programs. The guidance in SFFAS 27 is effective for periods beginning after September 30, 2005. SFFAS 28, Deferral of the Effective Date of Reclassification of the Statement of Social Insurance, defers for one year the effective dates of SFFAS 25, Reclassification of Stewardship Responsibilities and Eliminating the Current Services Assessment, and SFFAS 26, Presentation of Significant Assumptions for the Statement of Social Insurance: Amending SFFAS 25.

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