GFOA Best Practices and Advisories

In 1993, the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) Executive Board directed the association's staff to work with the GFOA standing committees to develop a body of recommended practices in the functional areas of public finance to give GFOA members and other state and local governments more guidance on sound financial management practices. This effort represented a fundamental new direction for GFOA and one that is still evolving.  

In 2009, the GFOA's Executive Board determined that GFOA's Recommended Practices should be reclassified as Best Practices and Advisories.  A GFOA Best Practice identifies specific policies and procedures as contributing to improved government management. It aims to promote and facilitate positive change rather than merely to codify current accepted practice. Partial implementation is encouraged as progress toward a recognized goal.  A GFOA Advisory identifies specific policies and procedures necessary to minimize a government’s exposure to potential loss in connection with its financial management activities. It is not to be interpreted as GFOA sanctioning the underlying activity that gives rise to the exposure.  The ongoing and future work of the standing committees will be the development of Best Practices and Advisories.

This resulting collection of Best Practices and Advisories have been approved by the GFOA Executive Board after careful development by the standing committees. Each practice and advisory was developed drawing on the collective wisdom of more than 50 persons with extensive and diverse experience in public finance. The best practices are intended to identify enhanced techniques and provide information about effective strategies for state and local government practitioners.

These Best Practices and Advisories are written as guidance for our members. You should check with your own professionals about specific issues related to your government.


Best Practices and Advisories By Category

Accounting, Auditing, and Financial Reporting
Budgeting and Fiscal Policy

Canadian Issues
Debt Management
Economic Development and Capital Planning
Retirement and Benefits Administration

Treasury and Investment Management 


GFOA Best Practices and Advisories that were approved by the Committee on Canadian Issues as applicable to Canadians are also available in the Canadian section.

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Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada
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