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GFOA Newsletter
September 14, 2017
EMPLOYMENT ADS  |  TRAINING  |  BEST PRACTICES
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Learn More about GFOA's New Executive Director

Chris Morrill took over as GFOA’s executive director on July 1, 2017, after 30 years in local government finance and management positions, replacing long-time executive director Jeff Esser. Government Finance Review sat down with Chris to talk about his first months on the job, the experiences he brings to leading the organization, and his thoughts about the future of GFOA.

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Association News
GFOA Launches Jobs Page on Twitter

You can now stay connected with finance jobs across the United States and Canada by following the new @GFOAJobs page on Twitter. This feed will be updated daily with job postings submitted through GFOA’s website.

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Budgeting Can Only Be as Effective as the Professionals who Make It All Happen – Sign Up for GFOA’s Better Budgeting Web-Stream Event

Enhance your budgeting skills and register for GFOA’s Second Annual Better Budgeting web-stream event from 1:00 to 5:00 pm (Eastern) on October 5, 2017, with an encore presentation on January 11, 2018.

With this year’s now 4-hour training, you will learn how to:

  • Create effective (and practical) strategies for aligning spending with community priorities
  • Develop strategies for accurate budget forecasting and effective decision making
  • Identify strategies for budgeting with uncertainty
  • Structure the budget process to best leverage the various players in the process
  • Facilitate necessary budget discussion between departments and among policy makers
  • Present the budget and communicate your budget message to various audiences
  • Utilize technology to assist in facilitating the budget process

Earn 4 CPE credits with your participation. If you have any questions about the training, contact GFOA.

If you’re not yet registered, sign up today! Save with early and group discounts.

Brochure, including registration form / Online

For group discounts submit the registration form and attach the group spreadsheet for October or January. The discount cannot be applied to registrations made online through GFOA’s e-store.

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Learn about the Latest GASB Statements, Exposure Drafts, and Implementation Guidance at this Year’s GAAP Update

Whether you’re new to government or a career veteran, get a year’s worth of updates in accounting and financial reporting at GFOA’s 22nd Annual Governmental GAAP Update web-stream event from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. (Eastern) on November 2, 2017, with encore presentations on December 7, 2017, and January 18, 2018. Other ongoing GASB projects, including the financial reporting model improvements to governmental funds will also be discussed. Read more.

Earn 4 CPE credits with your participation. If you have any questions about the training, contact GFOA.

If you’re not yet registered, sign up today! Save with early and group discounts.

Brochure, including registration form / Online

Take advantage of the early registration discount on the November offering when you register by September 29, 2017.
 For group discounts submit the registration form and attach the group spreadsheet for November, December, or January. The discount cannot be applied to registrations made online through GFOA’s e-store.

TODAY IS THE DEADLINE to Submit Your Questions for the GAAP Update!

For the program we’re looking to address real-life challenges that you’re facing in your government. If you have a question involving accounting and financial reporting issues that you would like covered, please submit it to gaapupdate@gfoa.org by September 14, 2017. 
Please note that we will attempt to answer as many questions as we can during the program; however, we cannot guarantee that all questions submitted will be answered.

GFOA Training Is Coming to Glendale, Chicago, and Charleston

Network with peers during GFOA’s upcoming training seminars. View the latest CPE Guide. For additional training opportunities, go to GFOA’s training schedule.

Register today! If you have any questions about GFOA’s training seminars, contact GFOA.

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News Links
New Report Suggests Five Distinct Local Economies

Approximately 84% of cities report that their local economies have improved since 2016, a National League of Cities analysis finds. The report, Local Economic Conditions: The Untold Story of the Varied Middle, finds five distinct types of local economies: a highly rural cluster; a large central city cluster; and three types of mid-sized economies. Other key findings from the 2017 analysis include the following:

  • New business starts and expansions drive economic growth across economy types.
  • Misalignment of workforce skills and employer needs is a pressing economic challenge across economy types.
  • Availability of affordable housing is an economic barrier for 42% of cities.
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Wetlands Made From Recycled Plastic Bottles Will Help Clean Water in Dubuque

A porous, raft-like matrix of recycled drinking bottles will be used to clean the water and create a floating ecosystem in Dubuque, Iowa, Associated Press reported. The city will use 14 of these floating islands to help restore Bee Branch Creek, providing habitat and wetland restoration. The two largest islands will be 44 feet long by 17 feet wide. This green infrastructure tool will allow the city to improve water quality without using chemicals, mitigating a nutrient buildup while providing habitat for butterflies, insects, fish, waterfowl, turtles, and frogs. “Inspired by natural floating peat bogs, the islands will help treat stormwater before it flows into the Mississippi River.”

“The city will use $199,865 in proceeds from a state revolving loan fund and a $46,000 state grant to pay for the $245,865 project, which includes a 10 percent contingency and $30,500 in engineering costs,” according to the article.

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Tips for Managing “Tribalism” in the Workplace

Governments often find that the goals and needs of different departments differ. Left unmanaged, this “us versus them” situation can have a negative effect on the organization, keeping it from meeting its overall goals. “The functional groups stop communicating effectively with each other and that’s when things start to go tribal,” according to a Harvard Business Review article that tells us what to watch for and what we can do about it.

The article flags four signs that tribalism is damaging your workplace:

  1. Teams continually blame each other.
  2. The only thing departments can agree about is blaming the customer or end consumer.
  3. “A lack of productive collaboration between teams is likely to be caused by clunky processes and structures, foggy communication, or misaligned. Be on the lookout for missed deadlines or commitments where neither side understands or admits why.”
  4. Whole departments refuse to cooperate with one another.

It also gives four tips for managing the situation:

  1. Don’t ignore what’s happening.
  2. Frame the situation and environment for your followers, and “if collaboration or a new way of working is important, then say so.”
  3. “Expertise, knowledge, and skills are widely distributed and it is imperative to break down information and data silos to be competitive.”
Make sure senior leaders are sending the right messages around collaboration and cooperation, and are being rewarded for it.
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Editor: Marcy Boggs  |  Executive Director/CEO: Chris Morrill 

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.

 


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