U.S. Government Standard General Ledger (USSGL)
Issues Resolution Committee (IRC) Meeting Minutes
April 19, 2012
This meeting was held at the Government Accountability Office, 441 G Street, NW., Room 6N30, Washington, DC.
Kathy Winchester (FMS) opened the meeting and informed the IRC that next Thursday, April 26, 2012, will be the last meeting before the Board Meeting.
- Followup to February 9, 2012, IRC Presentation on General PP&E Permanently Removed To Be Used as Spare Parts/Subcomponents
- Proposal for Transfer of Exchange Revenue to a Federal Entity
- Proposed Scenario: Treasury Forfeited Fund
I. Followup on General PP&E Permanently Removed To Be Used as Spare Parts
Christine Chang (FMS) provided followup on the request to create a new USSGL account to capture spare parts. After, much discussion, the IRC members requested that spare parts be reported in the “Operating Materials and Supplies” series of the USSGL accounts. Christine’s followup came after the IRC meeting held on February 9, 2012. Several of the Federal agencies that currently have this activity participated and provided their respective feedback to the IRC. Three agencies’ responses are provided below.
- DOD – Does not need the new account for spare parts.
- VA – Is okay with the new account, but does not have material amounts in this activity.
- NOAA – Does not agree. Spare parts should be in the PP&E series because of FASAB SFFAS No. 3. Quoted that spare parts do not meet the above definition of inventory or operating materials and supplies; therefore, spare parts should not be included in the 15xxxx USSGL account series. Spare parts more accurately reflect the definition of PP&E in that spare parts are tangible assets available for use by the entity.
Debra Carey (SEC) asked why we needed to create a new account. She stated that agencies can use subaccounts to record this activity.
Eileen Parlow (GAO-FASAB) agreed with NOAA that spare parts do not belong to “Operating Materials and Supplies.” She also agreed with the use of subaccounts to record this activity. She talked about the DOD Financial Improvement Audit Readiness Plan coordinated by FASAB to remove all its military equipment from the books (the balance sheets). Eileen quoted: “If this is the direction that DOD is heading, then other agencies should follow.” She emphasized it is not worth creating a new account and added that there are no requirements to split equipment any further on the balance sheet. She said the USSGL has enough accounts that can be broken into subaccounts to cover management needs.
Gerald Davenport (DOD-DFAS) said that DOD currently disposes spare parts and then brings them back to its books as part of the inventory.
Jerry Shea (VA) agreed with DOD on not creating a new account.
NOAA agreed with not having a new account for spare parts.
Kathy agreed that there are multiples accounts to be used for spare parts depending on the need.
Christine summarized by stating that the IRC has decided not to add a new account for spare parts.
II. Proposal for Transfer of Exchange Revenue to the General Fund
The IRC members suggested moving USSGL account 599300, “Offset to Non Entity Collections - Statement of Changes in Net Position,” and USSGL account 599400, “Offset to Non Entity Accrued Collections.” USSGL accounts 599300 and 599400 were reported on line 11, "Transfer in/out," of the Statement of Changes in Net Position. However, the IRC members suggested that the accounts should be reported on line 13, "Other," since they were not in transfer account series. A separate transfer out account wasn’t created for exchange revenue transferred to the General Fund at that time because it would have been a one-sided transfer. The General Fund was not a reporting entity in 2007 and, therefore, did not make a corresponding transfer in. This was the reason why both the transfer out and offset to collections were reported in USSGL accounts 599300 and 599400.
Now that the General Fund will be a separate reporting entity, it will record the transfer in.
Kathy said non-entity means that the money collected belongs to the General Fund. It is not necessarily custodial.
Debra remarked that if you collect money and have to transfer it eventually, you have to record it as a transfer. She recommended the use of USSGL accounts 57200 and 573000.
Chris Dyson (Education) agreed with Debra. However, to keep consistency with the General Fund Receipt Account Guide, all of the miscellaneous receipt accounts should be recorded in the 590000 series. He said to use 590000 accounts instead of 570000 accounts.
Karen Metler (FMS) stated that USSGL accounts 572000 and 573000 are not proper because those transfer accounts do not transfer fund balance. Instead they are used to transfer other assets. Additionally, those transfer accounts do not have budgetary impact.
Chris said the problem is that agencies still have problems reporting miscellaneous receipt account 298500. This is why they would like to see consistency by reporting in the 590000 series.
Eileen asked if USSGL accounts 599500 and 599600 are going to be used only for transfers of the General Fund. If this is the case, then the title and definition need to be updated so that they are not used improperly.
Kathy said that we will revisit and get feedback from the agencies as to which Treasury Account Symbols are involved. This issue may need to be tabled until next year. The decision is to leave it as is for now and allow agencies to use USSGL accounts 599300 and 599400.
III. Proposed Scenario: Treasury Forfeited Fund (TFF)
TFF is a receipt account for the deposit of non-tax forfeitures made as a result of law enforcement activities.
TFF made a payment policy determination and notified multi-departmental bureaus that:
- The mandatory payments to the bureaus from TFF will be reported as “Exchange” transactions.
- The Super Surplus payments will be reported as “Nonexchange” transaction.
For the recipient accounts that receive expenditure transfers, the spending authority from offsetting collections should be coded as follows:
- If the recipient account is classified as discretionary, then the spending authority from offsetting collections should be classified as discretionary.
- If the recipient account is classified as mandatory, then the spending authority from offsetting collections should be classified as mandatory.
Teresa Tancre (OMB) said we don’t need the word “Appropriations” in the following USSGL accounts: 421500, 422500, 423200, 133500, and 245500. She asked to revisit and change the title. For example, change USSGL account 422500, “Appropriation Trust Fund Expenditure Transfers – Receivable,” to “Expenditure Transfer from Trust Fund – Receivable.”
Michele Crisman (FMS) stated that in FACTS II, if you have an annual-year fund, it is considered expiring in 1st Quarter. In GTAS, it is shown as expiring September 30th (period 12).
Teresa prefers the GTAS way of indicating the accounts as not expiring until period 12, rather than the FACTS II way as 1st Quarter.
Debra was concerned about having to make a change in period 12.
Michele said the system will change all annual-year funds automatically.
The Bureau of Public Debt (BPD) has Deposit Funds in the General Fund. Its investments and earnings remain in the Government. BPD does accounting for agencies as well as its own. When investments are recorded, BPD is recording earnings through GWA.
Kathy said budget authority cannot be reported in Deposit Funds.
Christine said we will make the recommended changes to the scenario and to remember that the purpose of this scenario was to create proper accounting for the super surplus payment entries.
Maryla Engelking (DOD) requested the removal of all deposit fund related entries from the scenario.
Christine said the IRC has consensually agreed to remove entries #6, #7, #8, and #9 from this scenario, which will now start with entry #10.
The handouts located on the USSGL Web site provide additional detailed information discussed in the meeting minutes.
Kathy Winchester, FMS
Melinda Pope, FMS
Christine Chang, FMS
Jeff Hoge, FMS
Tia Harley, FMS
Stephanie Pickerill, FMS
Jonnathan Diaz Olivo, FMS
Hal Blitz, FMS
Karen Metler, FMS
Melanie White, FMS
Michelle Crisman, FMS
Marilyn Evans, Treasury
Jerome Commander, NASA
Youg Sun, HUD
Hesham Abdelaziz, USDA
David Surti, DHS
Leon Fleischer, SEC
Jerry Shea, VA
Eileen Parlow, GAO-FASAB
Teresa Tancre, OMB
Cindy Scharf, Library of Congress
Karl Foltz, FMS
Daniel Smith, US PTO
Casey McAllister, DOJ
Debra Carey, SEC
Maryla Engelking, DOD
Chris Dyson, Education
Gerald Davenport, DOD-DFAS