Vermont earns big jump in financial transparency score

December 3, 2021 | True North Reports (Vermont)

By Kim Jarrett (The Center Square), includes “Vermont is one of only 22 states that scored above 80 on a scale of 100 in Truth in Accounting’s (TIA) latest report on financial transparency. … Vermont received a score of 56 last year from TIA. Only 25 out of 50 points were received in the auditor’s opinion category in 2020. ” 

Pennsylvania middle of the road for financial transparency

December 2, 2021 | The Progress (Pennsylvania)

By Victor Skinner (The Center Square), includes “Truth in Accounting CEO Sheila Weinberg told The Center Square that Pennsylvania lost points for using prior year pension numbers, a combined $18 billion in assets and liabilities in confusing ‘deferred inflows and outflows’ accounts, and the way officials report liabilities for the Public School Employees’ Retirement System.”

Reason Foundation Vermont explores pension and OPEB reform

November 30, 2021 | Reason Foundation

By Marc Joffe, includes “The Pension Benefits, Design, and Funding Task Force created by the Vermont General Assembly is expected to release its findings in December.  … Truth in Accounting recently ranked Vermont 43rd of the 50 states based on its measure of ‘Taxpayer Surplus or Burden’ with a per capita burden of $24,000. ”

Illinois scores 56 out of 100 in financial transparency study

November 29, 2021 | Illinois Business Daily

Includes “Illinois earned a score of 56 out of a possible 100 points in a ranking by the Chicago-based policy institute Truth in Accounting (TIA), putting the state in 46th place among the 50 states. The TIA study is based on states’ fiscal year 2020 financial reports, meaning that the time period covered the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. ”

Truth in Accounting: NJ’s debt burden now $58,300 per taxpayer

November 23, 2021 | Sunlight Policy Center of New Jersey

Includes “Truth in Accounting published its annual “Financial State of the States 2021,” and the good news is that New Jersey broke its streak of six consecutive years as the most indebted state.  The very bad news is that despite the gusher of federal COVID-relief money New Jersey ranked 49th, with an average debt burden of $58,300 per taxpayer. ”

New report puts Kentucky in top ten least transparent states

November 22, 2021 | Bluegrass Institute (Kentucky)

By Sarah Durand, includes “Truth in Accounting, a nationwide organization that researches and reports on government financial data to improve transparency, looked at each state’s annual comprehensive financial report. Based on their scoring system, which includes receiving a clean opinion from an independent auditor - an area where the commonwealth failed - only six states placed lower in their transparency rating.”

Report gives Illinois a poor grade for government funding transparency

November 19, 2021 | KPVI NBC News (Illinois)

By Kevin Bessler (The Center Square), includes “… The nonprofit organization Truth in Accounting released its Financial Transparency Score report for financial reporting by the states and gave Illinois a score of 56 out of a possible 100. Only four states scored lower. … Truth in Accounting CEO Sheila Weinberg said some governments like Illinois are promising future pensions without a funding mechanism or transparency. …”

California public employee’s pension bill to go up after CalPERS lowers market expectations

November 18, 2021 | Monterey County Weekly (California)

By Madison Hirneisen, includes “… This expected reduction in the rate of return means that some employees will have to contribute more to their pension funds because the fund expects to earn less from its investment portfolio. … Bill Bergman, the director of research at Truth in Accounting, said the move by CalPERS to require increased contributions on the part of employees is a marginal solution to a much bigger problem. …”

The Defense Department fails its audit again, but officials have ‘no doubt’ it will eventually pass

November 17, 2021 | Government Executive

By Courtney Buble, includes “On Monday, the Defense Department completed its annual audit required by the 1990 Chief Financial Officers Act for the fourth time. … The financial watchdog group Truth in Accounting has issued reports on the past three audits. Following their most recent analysis, published in March, Bill Bergman,  …” (Note: We will produce an initial analysis of the audit results soon.)

Texas earns average score in financial transparency

November 17, 2021 | Texas Scorecard

By Sydnie Henry, includes “On Tuesday, the citizen organization Truth in Accounting (TIA) published the transparency grades states earned during Fiscal Year 2020. While Texas did not earn the worst score, state officials have room for improvement when it comes to being financially transparent with citizens. …”

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