Alaska government accounting principles

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The Legislative Budget and Audit Committee is responsible for overseeing the Division of Legislative Audit in Alaska. The Committee is composed of five members from the Senate and five members from the House of Representatives.[1]

Article IX, Section 14 of the Alaska State Constitution provides that "The legislature shall appoint an auditor to serve at its pleasure. He shall be a certified public accountant. The Auditor shall conduct post-audits as prescribed by law and shall report to the legislature and to the governor.”[2]

Audits are performed by the Division of Legislative Audit in order to ensure that Alaska state administrators comply with financial regulations and adequately manage their state programs and are published on their Web site. Pat K. Davidson has served as Legislative Auditor since 1997.[3]

In a report published in May 2012, The Institute for Truth in Accounting (IFTA) rates Alaska “Timely” in filing the state’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) – The annual report of state and local governmental entities. IFTA rated 23 states timely, 24 states tardy, and 3 states excessively tardy. IFTA does not consider Alaska’s CAFRs, and those of the other states, to be accurate representations of the state’s financial condition because the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) basis does not include significant liabilities for the pension plans and for other post employment benefits, such as health care.[4] Alaska’s Department of Administration, Division of Finance is responsible for filing the CAFR, which are published on their Web site. Kim Garnero is Division Director.[5]

Accounting transparency checklist

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Comprehensive Y
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Balanced budget P
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Timeliness P
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Usability P
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The good

  • The CAFR contains extensive notes to help explain its data.[6]
  • The budget, as reported in the CAFR, is published at least two weeks before it is voted on.[7]
  • Audits are posted online.[8]
  • The CAFR contains helpful notes.[9]

The bad

  • The CAFR is published in a pdf. format, which means it cannot be searched through online.[10]
  • The CAFR is published over six months after the end of the fiscal year.[11]
  • The latest budget was overspent by $1.52 billion dollars.[12]

See also

External links

References