Nebraska government accounting principles
In a report published in May 2012, The Institute for Truth in Accounting (IFTA) rated Nebraska “Tardy” 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 the state'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. Nebraska's CAFRs are published online by the Nebraska Administrative Services Accounting Division.
Paul Carlson is State Accounting Administrator. State Accounting is a division of the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) and operates and maintains statewide financial systems. The division pre-audits agency transactions, issues statewide Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports (CAFR) and Budgetary Reports, and coordinates the long-term financing needs of the state. State Accounting also prepares the Statewide Cost Allocation Plan (SWCAP).
Accounting transparency checklist
- The website has Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports (CAFR) dating back to 2002.
- An independent auditor’s report is published on page 14 of the document.
- It provides supplements to the budget workup, starting on page 66.
- The budget is posted using organized and consistent methods of financial reporting.
- Nebraska law requires a balanced budget and a deficit is forbidden.
- It includes all costs incurred by the government, including long-term liabilities, starting on page 17 and 39 of the document.
- The CAFR compares estimated and actual budgetary numbers, such as on page 66 of the document.
- The Nebraska office was timely in submitting the budget.
- The CAFR is posted in a PDF format, so it’s not searchable online.
- Nebraska Auditor of Public Accounts Web site, accessed October 30, 2009
- Institute for Truth in Accounting, “The Truth About Balanced Budgets—A Fifty State Study,” Page 58
- Nebraska Accounting Division Web site, accessed October 30, 2009
- Nebraska CAFRs
- Nebraska CAFR, 2009
- Nebraska.pdf Institute for Truth in Accounting, Nebraska
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