Explain the significance of GASB 34 to the governmental accounting world.Explain when the GASB began and tell its mission and purpose for governmental accounting.
The Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB) is an independent, not-for-profit organization. Established in 1984, the GASB works to improve financial accounting and reporting standards for state and local governments. One of the GASB’s statements, number 34, requires government to report infrastructure assets in their statement of net assets. Put forth in 1999, GASB Statement No. 34, Basic Financial Statements – and Management’s Discussion and Analysis – for State and Local Governments, also requires public infrastructure assets, including roads, bridges, tunnels, water sewer systems, and dams, to be reported along with related depreciation or preservation costs.
The goal of GASB 34 was to improve “the value of the annual audited financial report, making it possible to comprehensively assess the overall financial health of a city, county, or other government for the first time.” As the GASB recognizes, three significant changes Statement 34 made to the appearance and content of government financial reporting were “the introduction of management’s discussion and analysis, government-wide financial statements, and major fund reporting.”
Barcode Asset Tags for GASB 34 Compliance
In order to comply with GASB 34, government agencies have turned to durable bar code asset tags for fixed asset tracking to better manage asset life cycles. Fixed assets, also known as infrastructure assets, also may include road signs, bridges, tunnels, water and sewer systems, dams and lighting systems, land, buildings, equipment, and machinery that is attached to a building. Durable barcode asset tags, such as Metalphoto® anodized aluminum and durable plastic bar code labels, have made it easier for government agencies to comply with GASB 34 and related standards and to meet compliance in public property management accounting standards, including tracking fixed asset acquisition, sale, and disposal.
Public agencies also utilize Metalphoto anodized aluminum and durable plastic bar code labels for property identification and to track the useful life of their owned assets. These types of durable barcode asset tags last for the useful lifetime of the fixed assets and make it easier to report new capital asset acquisition, useful life depreciation, and disposal. Durable barcode asset tags attach to moveable and fixed assets for useful life identification, inventory control, and more.
Types of Durable Asset Tags for Fixed Assets and GASB 34 Compliance
Typically, GASB 34 asset tags are constructed to last the lifetime of agencies’ infrastructure assets. When made from Metalphoto® photosensitive anodized aluminum, GASB 34 asset tags are capable of shedding dirt, grease, chemicals, and salt. These premium GASB 34 asset tags will remain clear and sharp even after decades of sunlight, heat, and physical abuse. GASB 34 asset tags also are appropriate for labeling road signs, water and sewer systems, lighting systems, and more, to help government agencies remain in compliance with GASB 34.
Other types of durable barcode asset tags include:
Benefits of Durable Barcode Asset Tags for GASB 34 Compliance
Durable barcode asset tags help government agencies to identify items. They also enable automatic data capture by optical scanners to avoid manual input. This type of automatic recognition and optical digital scanning compiles information into databases, helping to reduce the instances of manual entry mistakes. Durable barcode asset tags should be incorporated into government agencies’ fixed asset tracking programs to realize the following benefits:
To establish and improve standards of state and local governmental accounting and financial reporting that will:
The mission is accomplished through a comprehensive and independent process that encourages broad participation, objectively considers all stakeholder views, and is subject to oversight by the Financial Accounting Foundation’s Board of Trustees.
About the Governmental Accounting Standards Board
The GASB is the independent, not-for-profit organization formed in 1984 that establishes and improves financial accounting and reporting standards for state and local governments. Its seven members are drawn from the Board’s diverse constituency, including preparers and auditors of government financial statements, users of those statements, and members of the academic community.
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) was established in 1984 as an independent organization that establishes and improves standards of accounting and financial reporting for U.S. state and local governments.
Members are appointed by the Trustees of the FAF to five-year terms and can be re-appointed for another five-year term for a maximum of ten years. The Board consists of seven members (one full-time chairman, six part-time members).
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