Having trouble viewing this email? Click here for the web version.
GFOA Newsletter
June 9, 2016
EMPLOYMENT ADS  |  TRAINING  |  BEST PRACTICES
image
Join a GFOA Standing Committee

Applications to become a 2016 standing committee member are being accepted through July 22. Serving on a standing committee is an excellent opportunity for GFOA members to contribute their experience and knowledge to the entire membership. GFOA’s seven standing committees meet twice each year and develop best practices, advisories, and policy statements. GFOA associate members from the private sector may also apply to be committee advisors.

We invite you to submit your application to one of GFOA’s seven standing committees: Accounting, Auditing, and Financial Reporting; Canadian Issues; Economic Development and Capital Planning; Governmental Budgeting and Fiscal Policy; Governmental Debt Management; Retirement and Benefits Administration; and Treasury and Investment Management.
arrow
Read More.
Association News
GFOA Testifies at IRS/Treasury Hearing on Political Subdivisions
On June 6, 2016, Patrick J. McCoy, GFOA President-Elect and director of finance for the New York City Metropolitan Finance Authority testified on behalf of GFOA at a hearing held by the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of the Treasury on their proposed rule on political subdivisions. The proposal would increase restrictions on the definition of “political subdivision” for the purpose of being able to issue tax-exempt bonds. McCoy’s testimony reiterated concerns expressed in GFOA’s member survey—specifically, that it isn’t possible to construct a one-size-fits-all definition of what constitutes acceptable governmental control of a political subdivision, given the varied nature of states and tens of thousands of local governments. The proposed rule creates a high level of uncertainty about the status of political subdivisions that have been authorized by governments and a high level of risk for many entities across the country concerning their ability to issue tax-exempt bonds.
arrow
Read More.
Your Feedback Is Important

Please take a few moments to complete this year’s annual conference evaluations.

Audio Recordings Available. If you missed any conference sessions, GFOA has audio recordings available for purchase, providing a unique learning opportunity regardless of whether you attended the Toronto conference. Recordings can be downloaded from GFOA’s website. Download the order form or order online.

Save the Date! GFOA’s 111th annual conference will take place May 21 to 24, 2017, in Denver, Colorado. Registration will open in the fall.

The call for session topics is open.

arrow
Read More.
GFOA Issues Alert on Rule G-42

The new G-42 rule from the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) becomes effective June 23, 2016. Rule G-42, or Duties of Municipal Advisors, stems from the Dodd Frank Act and the SEC’s subsequent municipal advisor rule. This rule does not establish any responsibilities for issuers, but it does create numerous responsibilities for the municipal advisors that are hired by state and local governments. GFOA’s alert provides information on the types of information and written correspondence that municipal advisors will now be providing issuers, including disclosures of conflicts of interest and acknowledgement of the scope of services for which the advisor is hired. The primer also includes information on aspects of the overall municipal advisor rule and the types of exemptions that are in place when a party other than a municipal advisor provides advice to issuers.    

arrow
Read More.
GFOA Issues Alert on MCDC Initiative Settlement Terms for Issuers

Issuers that self-reported under the SEC’s Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation (MCDC) initiative can expect to receive settlement offers containing standard provisions to which they must consent in the near future. The SEC is requesting an extraordinarily short turn-around for the settlement—5 to 10 days—but has indicated that it will extend the settlement offer upon request. This alert provides governments with an overview of the process and GFOA’s recommendations that state and local governments participating in the MCDC initiative become familiar with the standard terms that are expected to be in the offered settlements. GFOA strongly recommends that issuers seek legal advice prior to finalizing or signing the proposed SEC settlement agreement and make sure they fully understand the consequences of the proposed settlement.

arrow
Read More.
Don’t Miss GFOA Training this August in Sacramento

GFOA is bringing eight popular training seminars to the West Coast from August 29 to September 1, 2016, in Sacramento, California. Take advantage of an early registration discount when you sign up and pay in full by July 29.

Plan on attending one or more of the following courses:

Group discount. Register with three or more colleagues for the same seminar to receive 10% off of each registration fee. (To receive the group discount, registrations must be received and paid together. This discount cannot be applied to online training registrations.) Download the training registration form or sign up online.

A block of rooms has been reserved at The Hyatt Regency Sacramento. Click here for more information on special GFOA group rates.

For ideas on what to do while in Sacramento, go to Visit Sacramento. If you have any questions about GFOA training, contact GFOA

arrow
Read More.
Land Use Policy: Do the Math!

Have you considered how you can use data to look at your city in a different way—to find out what it’s really worth? In “The Financial Impacts of Land Use Policy,” Joe Minicozzi’s presentation at GFOA’s May 2016 annual conference in Toronto, the principle of Urban3 discussed the importance of data modeling to determine your real potential for increasing tax revenues. His advice is, in short, “Do the math!” The traditional development model favors big box retail—which does present a substantial tax payoff. But studying all the data can create a different picture. In other words, you have to measure everything to know what you really have.

arrow
Read More.
Austin and San Francisco Navigate the Sharing Economy

The “sharing economy” is a business model that allows providers and consumers to share resources and services, from housing to vehicles and more. Well-known examples include Uber and AirBnB. Cities like Austin, Texas, and San Francisco, California, are at the forefront of the challenge that sharing economy business poses to traditional municipal regulation and taxing regimes. At “Local Government Finance and the Sharing Economy,” a session at GFOA’s 2016 annual conference in Toronto, Greg Canally and David Augustine, from Austin and San Francisco, respectively, shared experiences on coping with this challenge, including the steps both cities are taking to collect taxes and ensure compliance with local tax laws, and the important successes both have had in collecting taxes and licensing participants. 

arrow
Read More.
News Links
Top Staffing Issues Include Recruiting, Succession Planning, Development

When it comes to employees, governments are most concerned about recruiting and retaining qualified personnel, succession planning, and staff development, according to a survey of state and local government human resources managers by the Center for State and Local Government Excellence. Governments continue to have difficulty recruiting for a range of positions, including finance, IT, skilled trades, and public safety. The skill sets they most need in new hires are interpersonal, technology, and written communication skills. Governments are experiencing an uptick in retirements. Twenty-one percent of respondents’ governments made changes to their retirement benefits over the past year and 52% made changes to health benefits. Offering a competitive compensation package was rated as important by 69% of respondents, and 85% reported that their benefits are competitive with the labor market. 

arrow
Read More.
Tips for Dealing with the Illogical Aspects of Negotiations

Human beings do not always make logical decisions, and negotiations are therefore “interpersonal exchanges clouded with emotion,” according to the Harvard Business Review. Best practices for addressing the human dynamics that frequently drive negotiations include embracing conflict quickly, which can minimize unnecessary escalation; discussing what’s really bothering you; creating an atmosphere of psychological safety, showing respect and concern for the other parties’ interests; and using facts instead of threats.

 

arrow
Read More.
Smart Street Light Networks Are More Versatile than You Thought

Good lighting systems improve traffic safety on city streets and pedestrian safety in public areas, but they’re expensive, comprising up to 40% of a city’s energy budget. That’s one reason many jurisdictions have considered LED-equipped smart street lighting which can cut lighting energy costs by 50 to 80%, according to the Smart Cities Council. In addition to cost savings, though, smart street lighting networks can integrate a number of third-party applications, including sensors that can be used not just to brighten or dim the lights as needed, but also to monitor traffic and coordinate smart streetlights, and manage water and gas metering, smart parking, garbage collection scheduling, digital information and regulatory signage, power management, and other city services.

arrow
Read More.
Send to a Friend  |  GFOA Website  |  Contact Us  |  Unsubscribe

Editor: Marcy Boggs  |  Executive Director/CEO: Jeffrey Esser

The GFOA Newsletter (ISSN 1051-6964) is published weekly by
the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada.
Correspondence regarding editorial and/or business matters should be sent to
GFOA, 203 N. LaSalle St., Suite 2700, Chicago, IL 60601-1210. Phone - 312/977-9700 FAX - 312/977-4806.

 


Informz for iMIS