Magazine article The CPA Journal

Our Collective Voice Gets a Caucus

Magazine article The CPA Journal

Our Collective Voice Gets a Caucus

Article excerpt

In my July 2010 column, I asked if there was "a CPA in the House," rhetorically referring to a House of Representatives bill that would have required the U.S. comptroller general, the Government Accountability Office (GAO)' s top officeholder, to be a CPA. But I now have a literal answer to that rhetorical question: There is indeed a CPA in the House - in fact, there are eight of them. On February 9, 2011, they formed the Congressional CPA Caucus, composed of six Republicans and two Democrats. This type of CPA leadership is long overdue.

Cochaired by Representatives Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) and Michael Conaway (R-Tex.), the caucus defines itself as "an informal, bipartisan group" whose mission is to discuss and formulate "innovative policy approaches to the issues affecting CPAs, including tax administration and compliance, and accounting and auditing standards" - but the perspective this caucus will bring to federal fiscal and budgetary issues goes far beyond that. Sherman and Conaway formed the caucus after three more CPAs - Steven Palazzo (R-Miss.), James Renacci (ROhio), and Bill Flores (R-Tex.) - joined the House as a result of the November 2010 midterm elections. During a recent interview with the NYSSCPA's newspaper, The Trusted Professional, Sherman said that the caucus will also provide CPA insight to lawmakers on the importance of the accounting profession to American business. The caucus is even engaging in talks with several senators to see if there is interest in making the group bicameral.

Time to Speak Up

These members of Congress recognize the value their CPA licenses bring to fiscal and budgetary matters, and through their efforts, Fm hopeful that their fellow lawmakers will too. How often has Congress passed hastily drafted tax legislation, leading the IRS to then issue unworkable rules that contradict existing tax law or require immediate implementation without enough time for tax preparers to address the relevant issues? How many tax dollars could have been saved if the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act's Form 1099 reporting provision, which most lawmakers and President Obama support repealing, was never included in the bill in the first place? The Congressional Budget Office is a federal agency charged with reviewing congressional budgets and other legislative initiatives with budgetary implications, but I cannot overstate the value of what Conaway calls the "unique education and experience" that the CPA lawmakers themselves bring to drafting legislations. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.