Letter From GASB
Recognition - April 29, 2002
Auditor General Thomas H. McTavish was recently copied on the following letter that was addressed to Governor John M. Engler from Tom L. Allen, Chairman, Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB):
I recently received a copy of the State of Michigan comprehensive annual financial report for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2001. Your state is among the first in the country to have issued financial statements in accordance with GASB Statement No. 34, Basic Financial Statements – and Management’s Discussion and Analysis – for State and Local Governments. As you know, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) seeks to improve financial reporting in a number of ways. The GASB believes that the improvements in reporting cost-of-services information and the overall financial position of the government to taxpayers, governing boards, and other financial statement users result from the implementation of Statement 34. Therefore, we encourage early implementation so that this information will be available to those users on a more timely basis. We are extremely pleased, and impressed, by your state’s ability to prepare the new financial statements in such a timely fashion. I was particularly impressed with the state’s reporting of all of its infrastructure well in advance of the required date for reporting existing infrastructure. Your early implementation is a tribute to your office of financial management director Leon E. Hank; division director and project director Laura Mester; agency liaison manager Lisa Fath; financial reporting manager Doug Ringler; the entire office of financial management staff led by the financial control division; and the Office of the Auditor General. I want to commend you for supporting the efforts to provide your citizens and other financial statement users with a more comprehensive reporting of the state’s financial operations in advance of the effective date of the standard. It is my hope that these users of your financial statements will recognize your efforts. In addition to the certificate of recognition we mailed to you, we also recognized Leon Hank and his staff at the National Association of State Comptrollers’ meeting in March for their leadership and commitment. I have provided a copy of this letter and other information on Statement 34 to your local newspapers in hopes that their recognition of your efforts will encourage other governments to provide this improved financial reporting to their citizens and other financial statement users as quickly as possible.
State of Michigan Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (SOMCAFR) crew: Scott Strong, Therese Regner, Laura Hirst, Brian Hovey, Tracy Jelneck, Craig Murray, Yvonne Benn, Heather Boyd, Ivy Britting, Ryan Chittaro, Julie Dexter, Lisa Harral, Paul Jacokes, Timothy Johnson, Constance Jones, Scott Kusnier, Cheryl Manning, Lora Mikula, Lori Mullins, Eileen Schneider, Duane Smiley, Jill Trepkoski, Michael Ventura, and Melanie Zoerhoff. The late John Wirth was also a member of the fiscal year 2000-01 SOMCAFR crew.
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