Government Financial Statements and Accounting

Nov. 28-Dec. 1, 2017,  8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

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Course Description

The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) is a key transparency document, communicating a government’s health, efficiency and effectiveness in providing services to the public. This course provides an overview of the governmental accounting and auditing function for managers, strategies for internal controls, as well as best practices in developing the CAFR. Experts in the field will share key insights on the value of understanding and improving your organization’s financial statements and long-term health. No advance preparation is needed, but knowledge of Excel is recommended.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the major differences between governmental and private sector accounting
  • Be aware of recent and upcoming GASB statements and how it impacts management
  • Understand how managers use financial statements and key metrics to evaluate the organization’s financial condition
  • Understand the CAFR, its major portions, and its use as a tool of transparency
  • Develop and understand important internal controls
  • Understand how to evaluate and explain audit results

This course covers key content tested by GFOA's Governmental Accounting and Financial Reporting exam, one of the five exams required for the CPFO certification. Additionally, participants can earn up to 32 CPE credits (28 in government accounting and four in government auditing) for this course through the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA). For NASBA purposes, it is categorized as an intermediate-level, "group-live" course. At the end of this course, students will receive a certificate of completion for the Government Financial Statements and Accounting course. All six courses are required to receive the Center for State and Local Finance's Certificate in Public Financial Management.

Lead Faculty

Usha Rackliffe
Assistant Professor, Accounting, Goizueta Business School, Emory University
• Previously served as chief financial officer for the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia
• Published in the Journal of Accounting Education

Past Guest Speakers

Robin Prunty of S and PRobin Prunty
Managing Director, S&P/Topic: How Financial Indicators Affect Credit Ratings
Alan Skelton
State Accounting Officer, State (Ga.) Accounting Office/Topic: Putting Together a State’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR)

Have additional questions? Check out CSLF’s frequently asked questions.