The GASB has issued an Exposure Draft entitled GASB Implementation Guide No. 201X-Y, Implementation Guidance Update – 201X.
The GASB periodically issues implementation guidance to assist practitioners in implementing GASB Statements and to answer frequently asked questions. The implementation guidance takes the form of questions and answers on a variety of governmental accounting topics. The GASB generally issues an update to this implementation guidance each year, which contains new or revised questions and answers derived from questions the GASB has received or implementation issues that the GASB has observed.
Previously, the GASB would simply issue the implementation guidance without first exposing it for public comment. However, GASB Statement No. 76, The Hierarchy of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles for State and Local Governments, changed the hierarchy of governmental generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) such that GASB Implementation Guides are now considered Category B GAAP, one level below GASB Statements, which are considered Category A GAAP. As a result of this elevation of Implementation Guides to a higher level of GAAP, all GASB Implementation Guides issued subsequent to GASB Statement No. 76 becoming effective have been exposed for public comment.
The draft Implementation Guide issued by the GASB in November 2016 contains new or revised questions and answers on the following topics:
- Cash Flows Reporting
- The Financial Reporting Entity
- Pensions – Plan and Employer Accounting and Reporting
- Accounting and Financial Reporting for Certain Investments and for External Investment Pools
- Fund Balance Reporting and Governmental Fund Type Definitions
- Tax Abatement Disclosures
- Disclosures Related to Deposits with Financial Institutions, Investments (Including Repurchase Agreements), and Reverse Repurchase Agreements
- Risk Financing and Related Insurance Costs
- Basic Financial Statements and Management’s Discussion and Analysis
- Accounting and Financial Reporting for Nonexchange Transactions
- Accounting and Financial Reporting for Intangible Assets
The requirements of the Implementation Guide would be effective for fiscal years beginning after June 15, 2017. Earlier application is permitted if the pronouncement addressed by the question and answer has been implemented. Comments on the Exposure Draft must be submitted by January 31, 2017. The full text of the Exposure Draft can be found here.
Readers should not act upon information presented without individual professional consultation.