Norwalk, CT, December 15, 2008—The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) today issued Concepts Statement No. 5, Service Efforts and Accomplishments Reporting (an amendment of GASB Concepts Statement No. 2). Concepts Statement 5 updates provisions in Concepts Statement 2 in order to reflect developments that have occurred since Concepts Statement 2 was issued in 1994. The proposed changes are based on the findings of extensive research by the GASB and others and the results of the GASB’s monitoring of state and local governments that have been using and reporting service efforts and accomplishments (SEA) performance information.
The reporting of SEA performance information is an important method of demonstrating accountability for the resources raised by a government. SEA reporting provides more decision-useful information about a government’s efficiency and effectiveness in providing services to its citizens than can be provided by traditional financial statements. One objective of this updated Concepts Statement is to provide a framework that can inform the GASB as it considers proposed suggested guidelines for voluntary reporting of SEA performance information by state and local governmental entities.
The revisions to Concepts Statement 2 clarify that it is beyond the scope of the GASB to establish the goals and objectives of state and local government services, to develop specific nonfinancial measures or indicators of service performance, or to set benchmarks for service performance. To emphasize this point, Concepts Statement 5 removes an entire section of Concepts Statement 2, titled, “Developing Reporting Standards for SEA Information.” Concepts Statement 2 also was amended to update terminology and to modify certain provisions to reflect what has taken place over the past 14 years.
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 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. More information about the GASB can be found at its website www.gasb.org.