a. Find the reconciliation between the governmental fund balances and the governmental-type activities net assets. This might be on the governmental fund Balance Sheet or in a separate schedule in the basic financial statements. List the major differences. What is the amount shown for capital assets? How much is due to the incorporation of internal service funds? Was an adjustment made for deferred property taxes or any other revenue? What is the adjustment due to the inclusion of long-term liabilities? What other adjustments are made?
b. Find the reconciliation between the governmental fund changes in fund balances and the governmental-type activities changes in net assets. This might be on the governmental Statement of Revenues, Expenditures, and Changes in Fund Balances or in a separate schedule. List the major differences. How much is due to the difference between depreciation reported on the Statement of Activities and the reported expenditures for capital outlays on the Statement of Revenues, Expenditures, and Changes in Fund Balances? How much is due to differences in reporting expenditures versus expenses for debt service? How much is due to the incorporation of internal service funds? How much is due to differences in reporting proceeds versus gains on sale of capital assets? How much is due to additional revenue accruals? How much is due to additional expense accruals? What other items are listed?
c. Look at the Statement of Net Assets, especially the net asset section. Attempt to prove the Net Assets Invested in Capital Assets, Net of Related Debt figure from the information in the statement or the notes. List the individual items of net assets that are restricted; this might require examination of the notes to the financial statements.
d. Look at the Statement of Activities. List the net expenses (revenues) for governmental activities, business-type activities, and component units. List the change in net assets for governmental activities, business-type activities, and component units. Attempt to find from the notes the component units that are discretely presented. e. Look throughout the annual report for disclosures related to capital assets. This would include the notes to the financial statements, any schedules, and information in the Management’s Discussion and Analysis (MD&A). Summarize what is included. What depreciation method is used? Are lives of major classes of capital assets disclosed?
f. Look throughout the annual report for disclosures related to long-term debt. This would include the notes to the financial statements, any schedules in the financial and statistical sections, and the MD&A. Summarize what is included. Are the schedules listed in this chapter included? What is the debt limit and margin? What is the direct debt per capita? The direct and overlapping debt per capita?
Obtain a copy of a recent Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). These may be obtained by writing the director of finance in a city or county of your choice. Your instructor may have one available for you, or you may obtain one from the GASB Web site: www.gasb.org. It would be best, but not absolutely necessary, to use a CAFR that has a Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting from the Government Finance Officers Association. You will be answering questions related to the CAFR in Chapters 1 through 9. Answer the following questions related to your CAFR.
a. What are the inclusive dates of the fiscal year?
b. Write the name and address of the independent auditor. Is the auditor’s opinion unqualified? If not, describe the qualification. Is the opinion limited to the basic financial statements, or does the opinion include combining and individual fund statements?
c. Is the report separated into the three distinct sections: introductory, financial, and statistical? Does the report have a “single audit” section at the end? (A few CAFRs include their single audit report in the CAFR—see Chapter 13 for more detail of the single audit requirements.)
d. Does the report contain an organization chart? A table of contents? A list of principal officials? A letter of transmittal? Is the letter of transmittal dated and signed by the chief financial officer? List the major items of discussion in the letter of transmittal.
e. Does the report include a Management’s Discussion and Analysis? List the major items of discussion. f. Does the report include the government-wide statements (Statement of Net Assets and Statement of Activities)?
g. Does the report reflect fund financial statements for governmental, proprietary, and fiduciary funds? List those statements. List the major governmental and proprietary funds (the funds which have separate columns in the governmental and proprietary fund statements).