Financial Resource Center
In June 2012, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) issued new public pension accounting rules that took effect in fiscal year 2015 for local and state governments. This page contains information about those accounting changes, which are substantial. We will add updated materials as necessary to help you meet the GASB requirements.
When it comes to defined benefit cost-sharing plans like PERA’s plans, GASB Statement No. 68 replaces the reporting requirements of GASB Statement No. 27, which was issued in 1994 and GASB Statement No. 50, which was issued in 2007. The new requirements call for four major changes:
- A “Net Pension Liability” will be calculated by PERA’s actuary, and a pro-rata share of the liability will be put on the face of each employer’s “Balance Sheet” in the government-wide financial statements. Please note that this liability is not reported in your governmental funds and will not have an effect on your fund balance.
- Pension expense will also be calculated by PERA’s actuary, and will no longer be tied to the amount of contributions you submit to PERA each year; rather, it will be tied to the change in net pension liability from year to year. A pro-rata share of total pension expenses will be put on the face of each employer’s “Operating Statement” in the government-wide financial statements.
- The discount rate used to calculate total pension liabilities will be changed, which may lead to higher liabilities for accounting and financial reporting purposes.
- Some of each year’s pension costs will be deferred and amortized over a number of years. Employers will be required to keep track of those deferred inflows and outflows of resources and expense them properly.
The only change is how costs are reported
It is important to note that these new GASB rules apply only to accounting and financial reporting. They do not apply to funding, and will not be used to determine contribution requirements. Despite the new requirements, the actual cost of providing pension benefits will not change… the only thing that changes is where and how pension costs are accounted for in financial statements.
PERA has added Final GASB 68 Schedules and Audit Opinion for Fiscal Year 2015 – Schedule of Employer Allocations and Schedule of Pension Amount by Employer, Current Reporting Period Only. This schedule contains a complete listing of all public employers in sections: General Employees, Police and Fire, and Correctional Employers.
PERA recently presented a webinar hosted by the League of Minnesota Cities entitled GASB 68: Employers’ Road Map to Successful Implementation that walks through the steps to implement the new reporting Requirements. A handout that was used as an example during the webinar can be viewed here. The PowerPoint slides used in this presentation can be accessed here.
PERA and TRA have developed a 2-page GASB 68 Q&A document that can be printed and shared as well.
PERA has compiled a brochure detailing the new pension accounting and reporting requirements for public officials.
PERA PowerPoint Presentations
MN GFOA Presentation
Sept. 24, 2015
State Auditor’s Training Conference
Nov. 19, 2014 (with TRA)
MNCPA Audits of Local Governments Conference
Oct. 20, 2014
May/June 2015 Presentations (with TRA)
MNCPA School Districts Audit Conference
June 2, 2014 (with TRA
MASBO Annual Conference
Nov. 14, 2014 (with TRA)
MN GFOA Annual Conference
Sept. 25, 2014
Links to information about the new GASB standards:
GASB Toolkit (implementation guides, videos, podcasts, and more directly from GASB)
GASB Statement No. 68 (Accounting and Financial Reporting for Pensions)
GASB Implementation Guides (Links to all of GASB’s implementation guides, including GASB 67 & 68)
GASB’s New Pension Standards: Setting the Record Straight (Q&A from Government Accounting Standards Board)
GASB 68 Requirement Summary (Summary of GASB 68 requirements, listed individually, and source of information)
Especially for Auditors:
AICPA GASB Matters(With links to SLGEP Pension Whitepapers)
GASB Pensions: Issues and Resources (Also put out by the AICPA with links to web events and other resources)
AICPA Newsletter on New Audit Interpretations (GAQC Alert #249 announcing new auditing interpretations)
AICPA White Papers
Recently issued auditing interpretations are listed below.
Interpretation No. 1, “Auditor of Participating Employer in a Governmental Pension Plan,” of AU-C section 600, Special Considerations – Audits of Group Financial Statements (Including the Work of Component Auditors)
Interpretation No. 1, “Auditor of Governmental Cost-Sharing Multiple-Employer Pension Plan,” of AU-C section 805, Special Considerations – Audits of Single Financial Statements and Specific Elements, Accounts, or Items of a Financial Statement
Interpretation No. 2, “Auditor of Governmental Agent Multiple-Employer Pension Plan,” of AU-C section 805, Special Considerations – Audits of Single Financial Statements and Specific Elements, Accounts, or Items of a Financial Statement
Questions about GASB 68? Email GASB@mnpera.org.