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Technology

AICPA Invites Comments on SysTrust and WebTrust

On July 1, 2002, the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) issued an exposure draft (ED) outlining proposed changes in the structure, order and wording of the principles and criteria for SysTrust and WebTrust services.
Community News

AICPA Will Monitor Remaining Andersen Audits

In light of Andersen's obstruction of justice conviction last week, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) has accepted Andersen's resignation from the organization's Securities and Exchange Commission practice section (SECPS) effective August 31. In addition, the AICPA will closely monitor all remaining audits of public companies through August 31.

Senate Panel Approves Bill to Tighten Audit Standards

On June 18, 2002, the Senate Banking Committee voted 17-4 to approve a bill to tighten oversight of the audits of publicly-held companies. The approval came despite a strong lobbying effort by the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and some of the larger accounting firms who opposed the measure. The approved bill incorporated several last-minute compromises. Full details are not yet available on the Web.

Auditing Standards Board Issues SAS95, Critics Want More

Like accounting standards, auditing standards have "grown like topsy" over the past few decades. To help practitioners come to grips with this expanding and increasingly complex body of literature, the Auditing Standards Board (ASB) of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) recently crafted a layered-approach to understanding generally accepted auditing standards (GAAS). But critics still aren't satisfied - some say the limits of GAAS are as hard to understand as the layers.

PCPS Celebrates Its 25th Anniversary

To those who believe that the AICPA may not be adequately representing the interests of local and regional firms in the profession, PCPS Chairman Bill Balhoff has one thing to say - PCPS' voice of over 6100 member firms is stronger and louder than any other time in PCPS' 25 year history.PCPS, AICPA's Alliance for CPA Firms, celebrated its 25th anniversary in style Tuesday evening with a gala at the Guggenheim Museum in Las Vegas, Nevada.

AICPA Signs Controversial Deal for CPA Exams

On May 28, 2002, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) and Prometric announced the signing of a joint agreement to deliver a computerized Uniform CPA Examination. The agreement is seen as controversial because the state boards were divided in their support for a proposal regarding the computerized exam.
Community News

Court Denies KPMG's Appeal of Charges by SEC

In a decision dated May 14, 2002, a court of appeals denied KPMG's request for a reconsideration of an independence action brought against the firm by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The court's decision to back the SEC was especially significant because KPMG's position was supported by the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA). The SEC charged that KPMG was not independent when it audited a client who purchased turnaround services from a KPMG affiliate in exchange for contingent fees.

AICPA Warns of 'De Facto Government Takeover'

Battle lines drawn in recent weeks promise a lively debate over audit reforms.
Technology

CPAs Qualify For Elite Dot-Pro Email Addresses

RegistryPro has announced that it is gearing up to operate the first professionally-restricted top level domain on the Internet by the end of 2002. The resulting group of Web sites will end in dot-pro (.pro) instead of dot-com (.com) or dot-org (.org).
Technology

Financial Reporting Ranks as Top Technology Issue

The American Institute of CPAs' top technologies list for 2002 ranks business and financial reporting at the top of the list. The topic rose from No. 3 in 2002. AICPA suspects this rise was driven by concerns raised in the wake of Enron. Wayne Harding, a member of the AICPA's Top Technologies Task Force and Information Technology Executive Committee, officially announced the 2002 rankings during a presentation at the AICPA's TECH 2002 Conference in Washington.

AICPA Issues Guide for Taking on New Audit Clients

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has released a practice aid for accounting firms that conduct audits of publicly-owned companies. It expects some of these firms will be taking on increased numbers of new publicly traded clients and professional staff following the Enron collapse.

AICPA Issues Update on State Legislative Proposals

State legislative initiatives for post-Enron accounting and audit reforms are proliferating and proceeding at rates comparable to federal initiatives. California held a hearing on May 6, 2002 on a controversial amendment to the state's peer review program. In addition, several bills were introduced over the past month in Pennsylvania, including one that would alter both CPAs' and non-CPAs' responsibility for reporting wrongdoing discovered during employment.

AICPA May Ban Reports on 'Hypothetical Transactions'

Auditors may soon be prohibited from playing a controversial role in structuring transactions to achieve a desired effect on financial statements. The change would take effect under a draft of an auditing standard proposed by the AICPA's Auditing Standards Board (ASB) on April 30, 2002.

Information Technology Alliance Breaks Away From AICPA

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has announced that the Information Technology Alliance (ITA) will break away and become a separate not-for-profit association on May 1, 2002. The ITA was originally established in May 2000 as an AICPA membership division.

AICPA Launches New Web Site for Students

As part of its marketing program to increase the number of students majoring in accounting, the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) is publicizing several Web sites for students. A new Web site, StartHereGoPlaces.com, provides information for both high school and college students.
Technology

AICPA CEO Bows to Controversy Over CPA2Biz Stake

On March 29, 2002, the New York Times reported that Barry C. Melancon, president and chief executive of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has agreed to donate his shares of CPA2Biz to charity. The decision came in the wake of considerable controversy over the appearance of a transaction nearly two years ago in which Mr. Melancon was given an opportunity to purchase a personal stake in the dot com that serves as AICPA's marketing and distribution arm.

State Societies Break Off Contract Talks with CPA2Biz

Contract talks have broken off between the state societies of CPAs and CPA2Biz, the official marketing and distribution arm of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA). The state societies were trying to negotiate a contract through Shared Services LLC (SSLLC), a joint venture between AICPA and the State Society Network to design, develop and deploy a national membership database and provide other administrative support. Several members of state societies serve on an advisory board for CPA2Biz.

AICPA Roadshow Intended to Rally Membership

Leaders of the American Institute of CPAs have been traveling the country recently to inform constituents on current audit reform initiatives and to outline the position of the AICPA on behalf of the membership.After similar presentations in Los Angeles and Dallas last week, AICPA President Barry Melancon addressed an audience of professionals and students in Arkansas on how the Enron scandal has challenged the accounting profession."For virtually every [certified public accountant] in this room, it is probably the most significant event in your career," said Mr.
Tax

AICPA's New Ads - Will the Media Get the Message?

The American Institute of CPAs (ACIPA) has announced the launch of a new advertising campaign to help restore confidence in the profession. New print ads will begin to run on March 10, 2002 in the Wall Street Journal and other major newspapers. These ads will emphasize the roles of CPAs away from the headlines, engaged in the daily routine activities of auditing financial statements, providing tax services and delivering business insight.

AICPA Masses Troops to Fight Auditor Reform

The Associated Press is reporting that the American Institute of CPAs is building a lobbying campaign against Enron-related reform proposals being discussed in Washington and demanded by the private sector.According to AICPA spokesman Joel Allegretti, an e-mail was distributed to 3000 federal key persons - AICPA members who have contact and/or access to lawmakers - urging their assistance in convincing lawmakers to temper the response to requests for reforms.Former SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt, who was the AIC

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