News and Updates

21st Consecutive Award for the City of Grand Blanc

The City of Grand Blanc received their 21st consecutive Certificate of Excellence Award in Financial Reporting. Pictured left to right are Tamar Lewis, board member for the Michigan Government Finance Officers Association, new city Finance Director Diane Waterworth, and City Manager Wendy JeanBuhrer.

grand Blanc

PPT Reimbursement calculator

Accounting Standards Committee chairperson Joe Heffernan has created an Excel file that local units can use to calculate the amount of reimbursement they should expect from the State.

This spreadsheet may be used by local governments to estimate the amount of personal property exemption loss reimbursement they may receive. This is an estimate for budgetary and planning purposes only. The Michigan Department of Treasury has not approved this spreadsheet, and actual results may vary from this estimate.

Thanks Joe!

Updated 3-29-16

MGFOA Online Store Is Now Open

Show off your membership in the MGFOA with the latest logo gear.  Visit the MGFOA Online Store to purchase shirts, jackets and tote bags.

MGFOA Marketing Study

Recently, MGFOA went through a Marketing Study and this is the Strategic Marketing Plan that resulted from the study.

Lawmakers to big box stores: Pay your fair share of taxes!

Bridge Magazine explains "dark store" issues in this online article.

GFOA Requests Help with RTPA Legislation

Throughout the month of August, your congressional delegation typically puts business on hold in Washington, D.C., and heads home. The “August Recess” is designed to give members of Congress and their staff some time to reorient, so it’s one of the very best times for constituents to communicate with them, either in person or in writing. Your advocacy has the most impact during this period because it allows your congressional representation to come face-to-face with the fiscal effects that federal preemption legislation has on localities within their districts. Please reach out to your member of Congress today urging them to support and co-sponsor the Remote Transactions Parity Act (RTPA) (HR 2775).

The RTPA would compel retailers to collect taxes on remote sales, based on the consumer’s location. Passing this legislation would finally bring federal law into the digital age by enabling state and local governments to collect sales taxes on online purchases that are already owed to them but not being paid. These bills would also level the playing field for brick-and-mortar retailers who currently face a competitive disadvantage of 5-10%, compared to remote sellers, because Congress has failed to act to update national tax laws with respect to digital sales.

Your direct outreach to your member of Congress is critical to advancing this legislation through the federal legislative process this year.  Please take a few minutes during this key time to send a letter urging your Congressional representative to support RTPA.

We encourage you to explore and use the resources available on GFOA’s RTPA Resource Page including a RTPA sample letter to Congressional Representatives, as well other material such as talking points and a sample Op-ed. Click here to find out the local address to send the letter and copy for hand-delivery to your Representative’s D.C. office.

Want to learn a little more about the Marketplace Fairness Act?  On August 12 at 1pm (Eastern), GFOA’s Mike Bailey, finance director for the City of Redmond, WA and Dustin McDonald, director of GFOA’s Federal Liaison Center, will lead a joint webinar with the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) on federal efforts to require online retails to collect and remit sales taxes to state and local governments. The webinar is FREE for GFOA and ASPA members. Register for this webinar.

CRC Report Examines Expanding Legislative Fiscal Impact Statements

How can we know the true cost that proposed legislation would impose on Michigan's local governments, businesses, and individuals? This is the question Citizens Research Council of Michigan asks in its new report

The Cost of Legislation: Expanding Michigan's Fiscal Notes. The report explores how Michigan's legislative fiscal agencies might go about estimating costs for proposed legislation that is aimed at those outside of state government. In Michigan, these estimates, called fiscal notes, are critical in informing state policymakers of the true spending and revenue impacts of legislation.

Nearly every state in the nation has a process for estimating the costs of proposed and enacted legislation on state government. In Michigan, the nonpartisan House and Senate fiscal agencies are responsible for assessing the changes that would occur if proposed bills are enacted. These assessments typically include quantitative impacts of bills that would affect the operations of state government, but typically do not include fiscal impact statements for bills that would affect parties outside of local government.

"Our analysis shows that of the legislation reviewed by committees, most fiscal impacts are determined to be unknown or indeterminate," says CRC Research Associate Nicole Bradshaw.  "While some other states are able to determine costs for parties outside of state government on a more frequent basis, several obstacles prevent Michigan's fiscal agencies from assigning quantitative fiscal estimates." In particular the report identifies the fiscal agencies' limited data access, the full-time nature of the Michigan legislature, the speed of Michigan's legislative process, and lack of expertise of non-state financial statements as hindrances in determining the true costs of legislation.

The report also discusses how the fiscal agencies may play a role in assessing whether legislation imposes a mandate on local governments. Under Article IX, Section 29 of the Michigan Constitution, generally referred to as the Headlee Amendment, the state cannot enforce a mandate on local governments without funding. "Accurate fiscal estimates would help state policymakers examine the cost legislation would impose on local governments and could be a step forward in ensuring that the state complies with this portion of the Headlee Amendment," said Bradshaw.

If policymakers wish to expand the scope of fiscal notes, CRC's report provides several recommendations including ways to improve access to necessary local government, business, and individual data as well as the need for the legislature to allocate additional funding to the fiscal agencies to ensure they have sufficient resources to expand their duties.

The full report is available at no cost on the Citizens Research Council's website,

Policies & Procedures for Key Financial Functions

The MGFOA Accounting Standards Committee has developed policies and recommended procedures for use in your community.  The policies cover key financial functions, including: 

Budgeting Fund Balance
Capital Assets Grants Management
Cash Management       Investments
Debt Management Payroll & Expense Reimbursement
Ethics Purchasing
Financial Reporting  

While each document was created and reviewed by members of the Committee, it is important to note that these documents are not a ‘one size fits all’ solution.  Finance officials seeking to use these documents should consult their respective government agency’s charter as well as their agency’s legal counsel.

Please visit the RESOURCES page of the site to view the documents.

If you would like to suggest any changes to these documents, please email the Standards Committee via Joe Heffernan.

MGFOA Committee Membership

The MGFOA Board is accepting application for members to volunteer to serve on various Committees

This is your opportunity to get involved and grow with the organization by serving and contributing your knowledge to a committee.

Click here to complete the Committee Membership Application.

Dashboard and Citizen Guide templates at Dept of Treasury

Follow this LINK.

Michigan Department of Treasury and EVIP Administration

Follow this LINK.

FREE: State of Michigan's Local Government Records Management training is now available online

Follow this link.


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Board of Directors '15 - '16

Executive Director
Bob Hertel
Christa McLellan
Deputy Treasurer of Financial Services
Wayne County Treasurer's Office
Catherine McClary
Washtenaw County Treasurer
Board Assignment:
  • Legislative Committee
Immediate Past President & Treasurer
Ed Sell
Finance Director
City of Monroe
David Keenan
Assistant City Manager
City of Midland
Board Assignment:
  • Standards Committee
  • Fall Training Institute
  • Golf Outing
Tamar Lewis
Accounting Coordinator
City of Flint, Finance Department
Board Assignment:
  • Membership/Mentoring Committee
  • Fall Training Institute
  • Golf Outing
David Sabuda
Interim CFO
City of Flint
Board Assignment:
  • Professional Development Committee
  • Spring Seminar
Associate Director
Ben Stone
Vice President, Relationship Manager
Flagstar Bank
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  • Technology Resource Committee
  • Spring Seminar
  • Golf Outing
Associate Director
Kari Blanchett
Managing Director
Public Financial Management, Inc.
Board Assignment:
  • Membership/Mentoring Committee
  • Fall Training Institute
Associate Director
Stephen Blann
Rehmann Robson
Board Assignment:
  • Professional Development Committee
  • Fall Training Institute
  • Spring Seminar
David Gajda
Finance Director/Treasurer
City of Farmington Hills

Executive Director
Bob Hertel


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