"The guide is particularly instructive about how information in the financial statements of counties, cities, and other local governments may be used to inform decision making," said Dean Michael Mead, GASB Project Manager and author of the guide. "People considering where to locate a business, whether to buy a government’s bonds, and many other decisions will find financial statement information very helpful."
The guide is designed to be broadly accessible, from the government finance novice to the long-time government manager. It contains a number of features that enhance its readability and usefulness:
The guide encompasses the sweeping changes the GASB made to state and local government financial statements with the issuance of GASB Statement No. 34, Basic Financial Statements—and Management’s Discussion and Analysis—for State and Local Governments, in June 1999. Governments have already begun to implement these new financial statements and will continue to begin complying over the next few years.
What You Should Know about Your Local Government’s Finances (order code GUG01) is available for $9.95 per copy from the GASB Order Department at 800/748-0659. The guide is the first in a series that will be released through the end of this year. The series will include a similar guide to school district financial statements and a comprehensive guide written for more experienced analysts.
The GASB is the independent private sector organization, formed in 1984, that establishes and improves financial accounting and reporting standards for state and local governments. Its seven 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 this website.