July-August 2013 News

In this Issue:

  • Chapter News

  • CPE

  • Just for Fun

  • TSCPA News


Brazos Valley Recognized as State’s 2012-2013 “Outstanding Small Chapter” by TSCPA

The Brazos Valley Chapter was recently honored as the Texas State Society’s 2012-2013 “Outstanding Small Chapter.”  We were chosen in large part due to the aggressive efforts made to halt the trend of membership decline (we were one of only a handful of the state’s 20 chapters which saw an increase in membership during 2012-2013).  The Brazos Valley Chapter was chosen for this distinction from a pool that included the Abilene, Corpus Christi, Rio Grande Valley, San Angelo, Southeast Texas, Texarkana, Victoria, and Wichita Falls chapters.  I often speak of the amazing legacy that has been left us by many of you who have gone before the current leadership team.  With this latest honor, our Chapter has now won the “Most Outstanding Small Chapter” distinction 9 times since our founding in 1975, with the previous selection coming in 2007-2008.  The Rio Grande Valley and San Angelo chapters are tied for second over this span, with 6 awards each (for a list of past winners, please visit https://www.tscpa.org/eweb/DynamicPage.aspx?Webcode=ABToutstandingChapter).

Thank you to the 2012-2013 Board for its outstanding contribution and leadership this past year.  I know I speak for our current leadership when I say THANK YOU to each and every one of you, especially those who have served the Chapter over the years on prior boards.  Your past leadership has built a legacy, and has been an inspiration to the current Board.  We are honored and humbled to be able to serve you while adding to the Brazos Valley Chapter’s impressive legacy.  Be on the look-out for a write-up of our Chapter in a future edition of “Today’s CPA” magazine.

Chapter Scholarship Winners

The Chapter recently awarded two $1,500 Texas A&M Scholarships and two $1,000 Chapter Member Dependent Scholarships.  This scholarships are awarded to individuals who meet pre-determined criteria and will be attending institutions of higher education.  The Texas A&M Scholarship recipients were Ms. Emily Smith and Ms. Sterling Knapp, both of College Station.  The Chapter Member Dependent Scholarship recipients were Ms. Erin Briers (daughter of member Alleen Briers), and Mr. Brian Massey (son of members Gary and Patricia Massey).  In addition to receiving the aforementioned scholarship funding, these individuals also receive free student Chapter membership.

Meet a Member

Chris Rankin, Chapter Public Relations Chair  Chris Rankin is beginning his second year as Public Relations Chair for the Brazos Valley Chapter, and also represents the chapter on the TSCPA External Relations Committee.  He is the interim controller for BMI Defense Systems.  BMI builds safety equipment for the military.  Chris earned a degree in Forest Management and a degree in Accounting from the University of Houston. He is an Eagle Scout and his hobbies include photography and cooking – with the “Bean Counter Cookers.”  He and his wife Jane have been married for 30 years.

Aggie Baseball Game Tailgate

On May 4th, the Chapter held its first-annual family-oriented tailgate at the Aggie Baseball Game.  CPA members Chris Rankin and Jim Ethridge, otherwise known as the “Bean Counter Cookers” served 20 members and spouses, plus children.  Ten pounds of Dead Cow Fajitas, six pounds of chicken, Spanish rice and pinto beans were served.  Fellow CPA member Ron Spies helped Chris and Jim ensure a great time was had by all.  Given the event’s success, we hope to hold a second annual event next year.  I would strongly recommend you consider coming on out, as it really was a great family and social event for our members.  We even got to see an “over-the-wall” catch that made Sportscenter’s “Top 10” and an Aggie 3-run rally with 2 outs in the 9th, to boot!

Annual Meeting Recap and Year In Review

The Chapter held its Annual Meeting on Tuesday, May 7th at Pebble Creek Country Club.  In addition to an excellent meal, Chapter Business was discussed and conducted, and incoming TSCPA Chairman Willie Hornberger made the trip to College Station to give a Professional Issues Update, for which CPE was given.  Willie sported a sharp maroon tie and reminded us all he has a child attending A&M, so we quickly forgave his Longhorn legacy pedigree.

President Rodney Horrell updated attendees on the success of our Membership initiative.  Our Chapter experienced Membership growth for the first time in 7 years.  This was accomplished during an adverse membership climate, statewide.  As of May month-end, only 7 of 20 statewide local chapters have seen an increase in membership over the prior year.  While statewide membership is down 4.5%, Brazos Valley Chapter membership is up 1.6%.  What changed?  The entire Board, led by Membership Chair Amber Bass, focused on ensuring we do a better job of communicating our story.  The benefits of membership are tangible and many.  By ensuring CPA’s are aware of these benefits, we were able to grow our membership.  We are even more excited about the coming year, as we have plans in place to further increase the Chapter’s attractiveness to fellow CPA’s.  Rodney also announced the newly-created position of Business & Industry chair, which will help us ensure we’re providing adequate value to our members in Business & Industry.

In addition to Membership, successes were seen in various other areas this past year.  We further enhanced our website (www.bvcpa.org), undertook and completed the first Chapter By-Laws Revision since May 2000, increased ticket sales to our second annual Scholarship Luncheon by 43%, increased CPE offerings by 167%, implemented a “Free CPE” program as an additional benefit to members, discussed the profession with some nearly 2,500 8th-grade students at the annual Brazos Valley Youth Career Fair, implemented a PAC donor recognition program at our periodic membership meetings, donated food and cash to our local food bank, helped sort donations at the annual “Food for Families” food drive in December, presented six public service announcement interviews on KBTX, and created and entered a float into the annual Bryan College Station Christmas Parade, among other successes.  Members also approved a motion at the Annual Meeting to make a $1,000 contribution from Chapter funds to the Relief Fund for TSCPA Members in West Texas.  Through the generosity of over 120 individual CPA’s and 15 CPA Chapters statewide, the Central Texas Chapter was able to raise over $30,500 to assist TSCPA members impacted by the tragedy in West.

What Are The Benefits of Membership?

While most of us believe in the value of our membership (or we wouldn’t be members), I think it’s worth periodically revisiting the many benefits membership in our local chapter provides us.

  • CPE offerings & discounts for members (local and state-wide)
  • Local Chapter scholarships for members’ dependents (this past year, two $1,000 scholarship were awarded-the dependent need not be a business major to qualify)
  • Networking opportunities with local CPA’s
  • Life insurance eligibility (AICPA and TSCPA products)
  • Online resources (https://www.tscpa.org/eweb/DynamicPage.aspx?webcode=GENmbrBenefits)
  • And finally, and perhaps most importantly, our collective commitment to our profession helps ensure we protect the foundation of our professional success-our CPA license


Auditing and Accounting 

David Holt, CPA, CFE

July 29 & 30, 2013 Brazos Center

Maximum 16 CPE credit hours

8-hour and 2 @ 4-hour; 8-hour $225 member and $285 non-member; 4 hour $130 member/ $170 non-member each half day, or $225 member/ $285 non-member full day.

REGISTER by contacting Linda Johnson, Linda@bvcpa.org or 979-690-5776

Live instruction format, based on the provided course material
No prerequisites or advanced preparation required
Update level content

Accounting & Auditing Standards Update (New for 2013) 8 hours CPE 

Unlike many annual update courses, this seminar will include significant implementation guidance, in addition to the “new rules” issued by FASB & the AICPA.  

This year’s primary topics include:
• All significant Accounting Standard Updates
• The progress of International GAAP convergence with IFRS
• The status of GAAP for Private Companies
• The most recent “Clarity & Convergence” audit standards (by AICPA)

Learning objectives: Update participants regarding the requirements, effective dates & implementation issues of significant new & proposed accounting & audit standards

Government Accounting & Auditing Update (2013) 4 hours CPE

This seminar will provide a summary of recent and prospective accounting and auditing standards, applicable to governments.  We will also participate in discussion questions and case studies to enhance your awareness and understanding of the implementation issues created by new and proposed standards by the AICPA and GASB.  

• The most recent guidance included in Governmental Auditing Standards (GAO) for Yellow Book Audits
• All recently-issued (& proposed) GASBs
• The effect on Governmental entities of the new AICPA “clarity & convergence” audit standards  

Nonprofit Organizations Update (2013) 4 hours CPE

This seminar will take a look at some of the more challenging new issues that must be addressed by directors, management, accountants, and auditors of Nonprofit Organizations (NPOs). We will consider accounting, auditing & internal control matters that are unique to the NPO environment.  We will also discuss practical & effective ways to resolve “problems” experienced by entities with “limited resources”.

Learning objectives include a basic understanding (overview) of:
Recently-issued accounting (FASB) & auditing (AICPA) standards and the expected implications for NPOs
• Difficulties & changes necessary in response to internal control deficiencies  and the “more rigorous” Risk Assessment Audits
• New guidance for internal control improvements for Board members & management of NPOs  

Governmental & nonprofit courses normally qualify for Yellow Book CPE credit. Other topics may also qualify for “audit proficiency” GAO CPE credit.


An accountant is having a hard time sleeping and goes to see his doctor.

“Doctor, I just can’t get to sleep at night.”

“Have you tried counting sheep?”

“That’s the problem – I make a mistake and then spent three hours trying to find it.”


TSCPA Annual Meeting Report  by Rodney Horrell

The Texas State Society of CPAs (TSCPA) held its Annual Meeting in Las Vegas on June 28-29, 2013.  Attending the meeting were chapter members James Larkin, Lyn Kuciemba, Sandy Brown, Toni McBee-Joyner, and Rodney Horrell, as well as Executive Director Linda Johnson.  Sessions included an executive board meeting, new board member orientation, CPE on the Affordable Care Act (aka, “Obamacare”), awards luncheon (at which 50-year members and other awardees were recognized), the annual meeting, and a CPA PAC reception.  Funds were also raised for accounting scholarships. During the meeting, the TSCPA 2012-2013 financial statements and 2013-2014 budget were presented and approved.

In addition, AICPA Vice Chairman William Balhoff, CPA CGMA, provided an excellent overview of the status of the profession.  Mr. Balhoff pointed out that while the current unemployment rate is 7.6%, the unemployment rate for accountants is 3.5%, with projected growth of 16% in accounting jobs by 2020 (and 22% over next 10 years).  In other words, the unemployment rate for accountants should decline even further, as the increase in demand for accountants outpaces the increase in accounting graduates.  Recent studies have also shown that CPA firms are among the most profitable small businesses.  In addition, Yahoo! Business named the CPA as one of the top 10 “Happiest Careers,” and US News named the CPA as one of the top 3 business careers.  We were also fed our usual dose of reality as it pertains to the National Debt, which is now 101.6% of GDP.  The current National Debt is roughly $16 trillion.  But due to off balance sheet accounting that the Federal Government prohibits for publicly-traded companies, while allowing itself to partake in, the actual debt is closer to $68 trillion when future obligations for Medicare and Social Security are accounted for.  This is roughly equivalent to the net worth of all Americans, combined.  While there has been some positive movement in the public’s awareness on this issue (including the debt’s impact on future generations), there remains a huge education deficiency in this area for both the general public and members of congress.  One congressman recently told an AICPA representative, “It doesn’t matter how much we owe, because we’re America.”  Such a statement shows just how far we have yet to go with some of our elected officials.

Not only was the Brazos Valley well-represented by attendees, but the work you’ve helped us accomplish this past year did not go unnoticed.  The Brazos Valley had the 2nd-highest PAC participation rate of any chapter in the state for the year ended 5/31/13.  Thank you for helping us serve as a model for others statewide.  We had 35 of our 254 members (13.8%) participating, and were only 2 participants short of having the highest participation rate in the state.  The Victoria Chapter just edged us out for that distinction.  I would like to personally encourage everyone to consider visiting https://secure.tscpa.org/cpapac/donate.asp and making a PAC donation so that we reach the position of “second to none” in PAC participation.  Every donation is welcome, from the smallest to those more significant.  Were everyone who receives this newsletter to make a donation, a significant impact would be felt.

TSCPA Leadership Nominations for Year 2014-2015
The Nominations Committee needs input for key leadership positions. TSCPA members can submit suggestions for next year’s Executive Board, directors-at-large (Board of Directors), Nominations Committee, and Texas members for the American Institute of CPAs Council. The deadline for sending nominations is Aug. 1.

Online Nomination Form:  https://secure.tscpa.org/executive/nominations/ (requires member log-in) The form is also available in the July/August issue of Today’s CPA magazine.

Accounting Careers Education

TSCPA would like to thank all of the volunteers who helped out with TSCPA’s Accounting Careers Education (ACE) program for the 2012-13 year. ACE volunteer members donated their time to travel to schools across the state and deliver presentations to students, host workshops and seminars for teachers and counselors, and provide speakers to university and college business and accounting programs. Thank you again for volunteering and promoting TSCPA and the CPA profession.

For more information about TSCPA’s ACE Program, contact Donna Fritz. (E-mail dfritz@tscpa.net; phone 800-428-0272 ext. 201 or 972-687-8501.)

 Your Secret is Safe

“I think I have a problem, but I’m afraid to talk about it. I don’t want people to see me as weak and unable to control my drinking, even though I had a scare last week when I drove home and don’t remember how I got there. Is there someone I can talk to without the world knowing about it?”

Your secret is safe with us. The Accountants Confidential Assistance Network offers assistance. Call us at 866-766-ACAN (2226). We’re here to help.

Help Promote Financial Literacy

TSCPA has added updated resources to ValueYourMoney.org to encourage smart money management and personal financial responsibility. Please promote these values and free resources to your friends and family.  www.valueyourmoney.org

Tell a Student About Membership

If you know a business major who is not yet a TSCPA student member, send him or her to the Student section of the TSCPA website at https://www.tscpa.org/eweb/DynamicPage.aspx?webcode=Student. Students who join now will enjoy membership until next May 31, for only $35. Benefits include a $300 discount off Becker CPA exam review courses and other CPA exam review discounts, listing TSCPA membership on their resumes, unrestricted access to the Members Only section of tscpa.org, connecting through Facebook, and more.

Four $250 tuition/book reimbursements, provided by the Accounting Education Foundation, will be awarded through a random drawing in October. To be eligible, students must be valid student members (renewed by Sept. 30), majoring in accounting.  For more details, contact Donna Fritz. (E-mail dfritz@tscpa.net; phone 800-428-0272 ext. 201 or 972-687-8501.)

 TSCPA Social Media Activities

TSCPA social media outlets (i.e., Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) are constantly updated to keep members and the public aware of news, issues and announcements regarding the Society and the profession. Members can like, follow and join TSCPA’s social media pages.