Conference Sessions

GFOA’s Annual Conference will include more than 75 concurrent sessions featuring leading practitioners, subject matter experts, and top researchers. Each session will contain a panel of speakers carefully selected to provide best practice guidance, discussion of current events, case studies, debate, and interactive exercises to cover a complete suite of topics pertinent for finance officers of all types and representing all forms of state and local governments. GFOA’s concurrent sessions will be organized into separate “core” tracks that focus on essential elements within public financial management. GFOA will also place an emphasis on emerging topics that provide finance officers with information critical to supporting their organizations and communities in today’s current environment.

The complete program for the GFOA annual conference is now available below.

85 Sessions

Pages


Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm
Speaker
President
Rahban CPA & Consulting Inc.

Government services must be able to withstand not just natural disasters, but also other emergencies such as terrorist attacks, cyber crimes, mass shootings, and IT fraud. Ensuring your government’s ability to provide essential services during and after a disaster means planning to protect critical systems and business processes. In this session, experts will discuss the components of a business continuity plan and include how to manage IT systems, handle accounting tasks, prepare necessary invoices, maintain internal controls, and safely accept and distribute funds, . This session will highlight case studies of entities who have had to address these issues – and the tips they have to help other governments prepare for the unforeseen.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm

Governments often struggle to properly fund asset maintenance and as a result end of replacing assets sooner. This session will provide an introduction to life cycle costing and explain how governments can implement this strategy to save money and more effectively maintain assets. Topics covered will include what is life cycle costing, why finance officers should be interested, how governments that have successfully implemented it, and some of the various benefits they have reaped from it. Life cycle costing is integral to an organization's ability to efficiently and effectively allocate scare resources to get the best return on investment for your capital assets.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm

Over the past year, GFOA has completely revised its approach to ethics based on scientific research indicating what works for promoting ethical behavior. At this session, you will be introduced to GFOA's new code of ethics and learn how you can put it into practice.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm

Many large governments approach their investing strategies with a strategic approach. Balancing risk and return help them to achieve their constituents’ expectations of optimizing taxpayer-provided resources. However, the key tenets of safety, liquidity, and return remain intact. This interactive session will provide an opportunity for larger entities to discuss: various aspects of their investment programs, events on the horizon that could impact public sector investing, and share other investing ideas and experiences with their peers.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm
Speaker
Organizational Program Manager
City of Boca Raton

Do you want to be a leader, a manager, or a coach? To be effective, you might have to be all three. In this session, learn the definition of a leader, manager, and coach and learn when and how to apply these roles. Keep in mind, it’s a balancing act.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm

Finance directors remain mindful about credit rating agency criteria for state and local governments in this rapidly changing environment. This panel will discuss major components and recent changes in methodologies utilized by rating agencies that are important for finance officers to understand. A review of GFOA’s best practice on engaging with rating agencies will also be highlighted.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 10:20am to 12:00pm

Intergovernmental grants make up a significant portion of the funds available to many governments, providing resources for some of the most important public services like education, housing, and public safety.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

Since the Great Recession, defined contribution (DC) plans have increasingly garnered attention among public employers. Join this session to hear how DC plans have evolved in the public sector and some of the top issues they face including the challenges of keeping participants in the plan and creating lifetime income streams for plan participants. This session will feature a discussion led by administrators of DC plans and cover the various strategies they have adopted including asset allocation and plan offerings.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm
Moderator
Finance Director
City of Centennial, CO

Ideally, all GFOA members would have great managers who help them succeed and make them feel valued. Unfortunately, not everyone has this ideal situation. In fact, in GFOA’s recent survey regarding employee engagement and job transitions, the number one reason for a member to leave an organization was due to conflicts with their supervisor. During this session, speakers will discuss strategies on how to manage up, evaluate the overall situation at hand, and assess if it is really time for a change.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

As stewards of shared resources, finance officers are tasked with managing public funds in an efficient and effective manner. Inherent in this role is an expectation of accountability and transparency to the community being served. As the availability of information has grown, the methods of accountability and transparency have rapidly evolved. This session will explore the meaning and purpose of financial transparency and how budget and performance information can be clearly communicated to the public. Speakers will address what financial transparency is in the modern era and why it’s important to enhance financial reporting and budgeting.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

Ideally, all GFOA members would have great managers who help them succeed and make them feel valued. Unfortunately, not everyone has this ideal situation. In fact, in GFOA’s recent survey regarding employee engagement and job transitions, the number one reason for a member to leave an organization was due to conflicts with their supervisor. During this session, speakers will discuss strategies on how to manage up, evaluate the overall situation at hand, and assess if it is really time for a change.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

GFOA's Urban Forum will provide networking opportunities and speakers discussing issues facing larger organizations, in particular GFOA attendees representing governments from metropolitan areas with over 1,000,000 people. Specific discussion topics will be based on a survey of GFOA Urban Forum members and will be announced in May.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

Every government finance officer worries about internal and external fraud exposures facing their government. Even the most robust policies and controls may not prepare a government against the fraud of the future. This session will highlight various fraud schemes including hearing from the US Secret Service on counterfeit currency issues. Attendees will also learn about methods for identifying fraud, and how to have appropriate internal controls to safeguard against such events.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

Whether new taxes are supported by the community or not, the finance officer plays an important role in tax administration by ensuring that taxes are collected efficiently, fairly, and correctly. Speakers in this session will discuss how governments implemented new sales taxes, marijuana taxes, sugar taxes, land taxes, business taxes, or adjusted existing taxes to changes in legislation, court rulings, or citizen behavior governments. In addition, speakers will highlight key impacts that governments can expect from the South Dakota v. Wayfair decision and the streamline sales tax initiative.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

GFOA's Urban Forum will provide networking opportunities and speakers discussing issues facing larger organizations, in particular GFOA attendees representing governments from metropolitan areas with over 1,000,000 people. Specific discussion topics will be based on a survey of GFOA Urban Forum members and will be announced in May.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 2:00pm to 3:15pm

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently approved amendments to Rule 15c2-12 that will affect the entire municipal bond market. While the SEC Rules do not directly require issuers of municipal securities to adhere to disclosure requirements, issuers have a responsibility to abide by their continuing disclosure agreements (CDA). Language related to disclosing bank loans and capital leases is required in CDAs beginning in February 2019. This session will discuss how the issuer community has responded to the amendments and what finance officers can expect moving forward.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 3:35pm to 4:50pm
Speaker
Chief Financial Officer
West Basin Municipal Water District
Speaker
Technical Specialist
North Dakota Office of the State Auditor

So you're in the process of evaluating items you account for in your fiduciary funds to see if they qualify as fiduciary activities under GASB 84. But what do you do with the items that don't qualify? In addition to discussing GASB's new standards and implementation guidance, this session will look at how to determine the correct accounting for the assortment of items previously reported as fiduciary.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 3:35pm to 4:50pm

Does it seem like the accountants in your organization speak a foreign language? This session will provide an introduction to fundamental concepts of governmental accounting. The session will be led by experienced practitioners and be taught in a question and answer format to resolve some of the most frequently asked questions about GASB standards, GAAP accounting, or specific accounting policies and practices in local government. Time will be reserved in the session for audience questions as well.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 3:35pm to 4:50pm
Moderator
Chief Financial Officer
City of New Bedford, Massachusetts

When the disaster itself is over, governments need to help the community recover and rebuild. These efforts focus on both short-term issues such as safety, clean-up, and restoration of infrastructure and government services; and long-term resiliency efforts including rebuilding in ways that enable the community to withstand future storms. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is part of that process and helps communities reduce risk, emergency officials preparefor all hazards, and people get back on their feet after their lives are disrupted by a disaster. Experts presenting this session will discuss topics including how to help your community immediately after an emergency; prioritize areas for rehabilitation and rebuilding; and use the lessons learned to lower the risks and costs of the next disaster.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 3:35pm to 4:50pm

Starting in 2022, the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) will replace the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) as the benchmark for derivative and swap transactions in the municipal market. This session will summarize work done so far by representatives from GFOA to the Alternative Reference Rate Committee (ARRC) on the transition to the alternative rate. Speakers will also discuss the complexities of the conversion process to inform issuers on how they should approach existing and future transactions.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 3:35pm to 5:05pm

By design, government makes tough decisions every day. Even well-seasoned budgeteers can recall when they first learned to say "no." This session will provide recommendations from experienced finance and budget officers on how to have difficult conversations; coordinate an effective process that facilitates discussion and collaboration; and involve elected officials in the decision making process early enough to better balance competing demands in the face of varying pressure.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 - 3:35pm to 4:50pm

Utility finance requires detailed knowledge in rate setting, enterprise accounting, asset management, and understanding regulations. This networking group is composed of GFOA members from utility organizations and municipalities that operate utilities.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019 - 8:10am to 10:10am

According to the most recent Report Card for America’s Infrastructure from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), the physical condition and needed investment for infrastructure in the United States received a D+ grade. A large portion of the infrastructure in the U.S.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019 - 8:10am to 10:10am

Common legal roles in bond transactions are issuer counsel, bond counsel, underwriter counsel, disclosure counsel, and special tax counsel. For issuers who are infrequently in the market, distinguishing between who to engage and when is important and often a confusing part of the issuance and management of debt. Speakers will share their insights on how best to interact with legal advisors.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019 - 8:30am to 10:10am

Much attention has been put on governments' need to recruit the next generation of finance officers. But what do you do once they are hired? This session will discuss how to on-board your new finance staff and ensure they become effective components of the finance staff. The session will also feature case studies from GFOA's recently released research paper titled Realizing the Best of Both Worlds: An Engaged Workforce and More Satisfied Citizens on how to create and maintain a culture that encourages shared mission and goals between the organization and its staff.