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State Board Report

November 2015

The need for objective and trusted financial advisers has never been greater, AICPA 2015-2016 Chair Timothy L. Christen told the NASBA Annual Meeting, and the need for collaboration and specialization is critical. He explained the AICPA was opening the standalone CGMA credential "for professionals in business and industry who will never go down the CPA pathway. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a public accounting designation." Mr. Christen assured the Accountancy Boards, that acting upon feedback from NASBA President Ken Bishop: "We will be requiring non-CPA CGMAs to specifically identify they are non-CPA members of the AICPA." He added: "While the gold standard for management accountants is a CPA who also holds the CGMA designation, some professionals are choosing not to go down this path."

He urged the Boards to adopt the 2014 changes to the Uniform Accountancy Act: "In response to the reality of today’s marketplace in which firms practice across borders, it’s time for states to look at offering the mobility privilege to CPA firms." While the firm he leads, Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, has its offices in multiple states registered with the State Boards, Mr. Christen said, "CPA firm mobility would enable smaller- and medium-sized firms without in-state offices to offer their services to clients across state lines without the burden of registration, while retaining appropriate public protections. It gives these firms new opportunities to compete for business, keeping them competitive in a world where boundaries don’t have to be barriers."

Fourteen states already have firm mobility, he noted, and individual CPA mobility is now in 52 jurisdictions.

The revised comprehensive definition of "attest" has been adopted in 30 states. He encouraged the remaining Boards to adopt it in 2016, as well as the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct, as 19 states have already done.

"I know that we can continue to keep the profession vibrant and relevant by working together, and I look forward to our continued efforts to promote the CPA as the world’s premier accounting credential," Mr. Christen stated.

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