Government

A&A

$300M Disaster Relief Available For NY Small Businesses

The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved more than $300 million in disaster loans to over 3,841 New York City residents and businesses following the World Trade Center attacks, SBA Administrator Hector V. Barreto announced March 8, 2002."The Small Business Administration is committed to helping the people of New York City rebuild their homes and businesses," Barreto said.
Community News

Andersen Gets Nod for Government Work

Bucking warnings from the White House budget office which has questioned Andersen's ability to perform quality work, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has hired the Big Five firm to perform an assessment of NHTSA's development of software for identifying auto defect trends.A federal audit of NHTSA's defect identification system was performed last month in which it was determined that the process is flawed.

GAO Proposes Changes to Audit Standards

The U.S. General Accounting Office has released for comment an exposure draft of the 2002 revision of the Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS). This exposure draft excludes the standard for independence which is being revised separately. The proposed audit standards, which are known as the "yellow book," are organized into three sections: financial audits, attestation engagements and performance audits.

GAO Announces New Rules on Auditor Independence

As Congress continued its investigations and calls for reforms escalated in response to the Enron collapse, the General Accounting Office (GAO) found the time was right to take bold action. It decided to break ranks with the rest of the accounting profession and issue yet another independence standard with which auditors must comply. Restrictions on ConsultingGAO’s new standard introduces significant changes.
A&A

FASB Forges Ahead on Three New Frontiers

At its January 9, 2002 meeting, following a rash of well-publicized complaints about the slowness of the accounting standard-setting process, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) decided to forge ahead on three new frontiers. It tentatively agreed to: 1. Issue for public comment a prospectus for a major project to update the concepts and principles of revenue recognition. 2.
Technology

Software Piracy Cops Offer Amnesty, Target 7 US Cities

The Business Software Alliance (BSA) has announced its Software Grace Period for seven major US cities during the month of January. During the Grace Period, BSA is giving area businesses a one-month opportunity to review their software programs and acquire the licenses they need to get legal without facing penalties for past infringement imposed by BSA.

New Year, New Laws

With the ringing in of the new year comes the effective date of new laws passed by state legislatures across the country. Laws from election reform to driving restrictions to smoking to gambling went into effect in the early hours of January 1.A quick glance at some of the new laws taking effect this week:In Washington state, a voter-approved initiative will take effect, capping local governments' property tax growth to 1 percent, unless voters allow a larger increase.
Tax

Federal Lawmakers Fail in Push for Stimulus Bill

The clock kept ticking, and members of various congressional committees kept arguing, and in the end, the vast economic stimulus package was left on the cutting room floor.The hope was for agreement on various features that would boost spending and put more money into the economy.

New Social Security Proposals Unveiled

The following article is provided courtesy of CCH, Inc.Following the recent release of Social Security reform proposals by a presidential commission, congressional leaders unveiled proposals of their own that would establish personal retirement accounts within the system.The Social Security Guarantee Plus Plan (HR 3497) was introduced on December 13 by House Ways and Means Social Security Subcommittee Chairman E. Clay Shaw, Jr., R-Fla.
A&A

BusinessLaw.gov Offers Small Business a Hand

BusinessLaw.gov, an online resource designed to provide legal and regulatory information to America's small businesses has a wealth of information. Topics on the Web site range from the most basic and crucial, such as choosing a business structure or hiring a lawyer, to highly specialized issues such as e-commerce and exporting. The site also acts as a gateway to federal, state and local information that affects small businesses. From the site, business owners may quickly check zoning codes for their local area, or file a complaint with the Office of the National Ombudsman.
Community News

KPMG Consulting to Design System for HHS

KPMG Consulting, Inc. has announced it has been selected as the business advisor and systems integrator by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to plan and design a Unified Financial Management System (UFMS). The mission of the UFMS is to provide HHS with a single web-accessible financial management system that enables uniform financial management across HHS agencies. The base year of the contract is valued at $11.9 million. The estimated total value of the contract is $92.4 million if all options and award fees are exercised.
Community News

PwC Program Wins Government Tech Leadership Award

PwC Consulting, a business of PricewaterhouseCoopers, has announced that eArmyU, the e-learning portal developed and operated by PwC Consulting for the U.S.
A&A

SBA Funds Grant Program for Very Small Businesses

America’s smallest businesses will now have access to more training and technical assistance to help them start or grow a business under a new program funded by the U.S.
Community News

Mayor Giuliani to Join Ernst & Young?

According to the New York Post, New York's outgoing mayor, Rudolph Giuliani, may be considering a position with the Big 5 firm of Ernst & Young!While neither confirming nor denying the negotiations, the mayor suggested that he was at least in discussions with the company. Responding to a question about whether he might be considering a position at Ernst & Young, the mayor said, "I think I'd rather discuss that privately, but it's, it's still very preliminary."An aide to Mr. Giuliani said that he thought such a move by the mayor was not likely.

Social Security Administration Debates Privacy Issue

Officials of the Social Security Administration (SSA) are facing concerns over the necessity to protect the privacy of American citizens in light of the September 11 terrorist attacks.The SSA chief criminal investigator feels the agency has a responsibility to disclose personal tax records, Social Security numbers, and other data to law enforcement agencies investigating terrorist activities.
A&A

SBA Offers New Loan Program

The U.S.
A&A

When Reservists are Called to Duty – What Your Company Should Know

In light of the September 11 terrorist attacks, businesses around the country may find themselves having to adjust frequently as reservists are called upon to serve their county. Two issues that companies may face when their employees are called upon, is how to replace them or handle their immediate responsibilities. A second issue is what to do about salary and benefits – should you as a company continue paying reservists or guard members or provide their families with health insurance?
Tax

Senate Considers 50% Bonus Depreciation Legislation

Senator Orrin Hatch, R-UT, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, has introduced legislation that would provide a temporary 50% bonus depreciation deduction for all businesses that purchase fixed assets during the period between September 11, 2001, and July 1, 2002.The Economic Stimulus Through Bonus Depreciation Act of 2001, Senate bill 1553, offers businesses the 50% first-year bonus depreciation in addition to the normal depreciation deduction, computed as if the bonus depreciation did not exist.

New War Bonds Provide Patriotic Investment Option

A revival of the popular World War II war bonds is anticipated next year as Congress votes to reinstate the once-popular patriotic investment and encourage national economic support of the anti-terrorism effort.The Senate has already passed a bill to authorize the issue of war bonds, and the House is expected to follow suit quickly. Proceeds from the sale of war bonds go to the government untargeted, so the money can be used at the discsretion of the federal government.

GASB Issues First CPE Course

The Government Accounting Standards Board has issued its first CPE course, "The Financial Reporting Model - A Review of GASB Statement No. 34, Basic Financial Statements - and Management's Discussion and Analysis - for State and Local Governments."The course covers Statement 34 as amended by Statement 35 (colleges and universities) and Statement 37 (Statement 34 omnibus). It also incorporates guidance from the Statement 34 Implementation Guide.

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