Government Finance Review

Magazine covers financial management for state and local government through articles and commentary on best practices, management and more.

Articles from Vol. 12, No. 6, December

1996 Legislative Wrap-Up: Dismal Start, Strong Finish
The second session of the 104th Congress stood in stark contrast to the first. While 1996 began with much of the federal government shut down due to continued debate between Congress and the administration over the still unfinished FY1996 spending measure...
Current Local Government Budgeting Practices
Survey data from a sample of the Government Finance Officers Association membership delineate the current state of the budgeting art. What budgeting practices do local governments use today? The answer to this question illustrates the current state...
D.C.'S Financial Straits
While the District of Columbia must contend with the same realities that afflict most of the nation's older cities, it has special financial hardships resulting from the terms of the home rule act. The following article is adapted from the report "DC's...
National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting
The National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting (Council) was established in 1995 by eight associations of state and local government, including the GFOA, and charged with developing recommended practices in the area of state and local budgeting....
Pension Obligation Bonds: Practices and Perspectives
As more and more news articles report the issuance of bonds by public pension systems for the purpose of covering unfunded liabilities, the editors of Government Finance Review invited four officials to relate their experiences or perspectives on this...
Planning for Debt Management: A Computer-Based Tool for Analyzing Debt Capacity
Seeking a close coordination of the five-year financial forecast with the five-year capital improvement plan, Fairfax County developed spreadsheet programs that merge the two planning processes to produce analyses of cash-flow patterns, match bond sale...
Public Pension Fund Ratings
Over the past several years, interest in the use of public pension fund ratings has increased. A pension fund rating, like other credit ratings, is an opinion on the capacity of the retirement system to meet its financial obligations. One of the major...
Standardized Investment Agreements: A Double-Edged Sword
The magnitude of investment losses suffered by public and private entities alike in 1994 and 1995 as a result of speculative and often unsuitable derivative investments rocked the financial community and sent many legislators scurrying to introduce legislation...
St. Louis Summer Finance Institute for Students
Many high school students have only a vague idea about what the world of finance has to offer. The comptroller of the City of St. Louis, Missouri, however, envisioned a program that would introduce students to the various opportunities available in finance....
Sunnyvale's Outcome Management: Taking Performance Budgeting One Step Further
High-level outcomes as articulated by city council, not organizational boundaries, determine the structure of Sunnyvale's programs and its outcome-oriented budget. Each year the Government Finance Officers Association bestows its prestigious Award for...
The Dollar's Role under Threat
The world today is dominated by three currencies: the dollar, the deutschemark, and the yen. Head and shoulders above its main rivals stands the dollar, alone as the true international reserve currency of the world. But for how long can the dollar's...
The Request for Proposal Handbook
The following article presents excerpts from a sourcebook of guidelines, best practices, examples, laws, regulations, and checklists from jurisdictions in the United States and Canada. The Request for Proposal Handbook was published in 1995. The excerpts...
Trends in Key Ratios Using the GFOA Financial Indicators Databases 1989-1993
The underlying stability in the ratios' five-year performance enhances the databases' utility and credibility as a benchmarking tool. Obtaining relatively recent comparative data is a common problem for analysts of municipalities, schools, counties,...
Using the Internet to Assist Investment Decisions
In early 1996, a survey conducted by the GFOA and MBIA Insurance Corporation on the use of technology by public finance officials found strong interest in the use of on-line technology to enhance the investment function in state and local governments....
Workforce Development Center: A Collaborative Effort in Waukesha County
Nine public and private agencies combined their resources to form a one-stop shop for citizens requiring a wide variety of social services and assistance; the result - more efficient service delivery and increased customer satisfaction. The GFOA presents...

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