Starting in 2021, CPFO members will report maintenance information on an annual basis. The new requirements decrease the annual continuing professional education (CPE) credits to fifteen (15) and add a new component that focuses on collaboration and engagement with CPFOs.
CPFOs will report three (3) GFOA Engagement Credits (EC) every year, in addition to 15 CPEs.
Below is a list of ways to earn ECs:
Serve on GFOA Executive Board
Serve on GFOA Committee
Serve as Leadership for State/Provincial GFOA Association (board or committee role)
Serve as Leadership for Peer Association
Serve in Leadership Capacity in GFOA Member Forum
Serve on GFOA Local Conference Committee
Speak at the GFOA Annual Conference
Speak at Other Conference on Public Finance
Serve as Presenter for GFOA Training
Serve on GFOA Research Task Force
Publish Article in GFR
Complete Case Study Write Up of Own Experience
Document Best Practice Implementation in Your Government
Serve as a mentor for GFOA program
Participate as Volunteer Reviewer for GFOA Award Program
Participate as Volunteer for CPFO Program
Review GFOA Research Paper
Attend GFOA Conference
Participate in GFOA Virtual Networking Sessions
Member of Black Caucus
Member of WPFN
Member of Small Government Forum
Member of Urban Forum
Attend a GFOA State/Provincial or Peer Association Conference
GFOA Research Challenge Submission
GFOA Research Challenge Judge
GFOA Research Challenge Winner
The list is a guide for the types of activities that qualify as ECs. More opportunities will be added to the list as they become available and as CPFOs recommend them.
Frequently Asked Questions
What types of CPEs count towards the required fifteen?
CPFOs must commit to staying current in the field of public finance by participating in continuing professional education (CPE) registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA). All CPFOs must earn at least fifteen CPE credits beginning with the first full calendar year after achieving certification.
I volunteer in a leadership role with a peer organization or state/ provincial association; will that count as three engagement credits?
Yes. GFOA expects that all CPFOs engage with the organization or other similar peer associations to share knowledge, network with peers, and advance the profession. Peer organizations are those such as GASB, NASBA, AGA, GFA, AICPA, AASHTA, any GFOA state or provincial association, and more.
I’ve already earned the CPFO certification. Do I have to report engagement credits?
Yes. All CPFOs are required to earn at least fifteen (15) CPEs and three (3) engagement credits each calendar year starting in 2021.
I’m still working towards the certification. When will I report CPEs and ECs?
Beginning with the first full calendar year after earning the certification.
Examples: If you earn the certification at any time in 2021, your first annual reporting window will start on 1/1/22 and ends on 12/31/22. If you earn the certification in 2022, then your first annual reporting will start on 1/1/23 and end on 12/31/2023, and so on.
I’d prefer only to report CPEs. Do I have to participate in the GFOA Engagement Credit aspect of the program?
Yes. We know that CPFO members are already active with GFOA and various peer organizations, including state and provincial chapters, so we expect three ECs to be easy to complete.
How will I report this information?
GFOA staff are always looking to improve the reporting and tracking process. We will track CPEs that you earn through GFOA and most GFOA volunteer activities, such as being on a committee, in a networking forum, or attending a conference. For activities outside of GFOA, you can report those through the GFOA LMS.
To submit non-GFOA CPEs and Engagement Credits, please read the instructions here.
To view a short overview video of the submission process, click here.
What is the CPFO Membership Fee?
Individuals earning the certification will start paying the $175 CPFO renewal fee following the first full calendar year after obtaining the certification. Ongoing renewal fees for CPFOs will be invoiced at the beginning of the calendar year. The initial membership fee will be billed in January 2022.
For example, if you earn the certification in 2022, you will initially be invoiced in January 2024. Earn it in 2023; the first invoice is in January 2025.
The benefits included with the annual membership fee will include:
What is the reporting year?
You will report the information every calendar year, starting in January and ending in December. The deadline to report the information will be in February.
Discount on GFOA Publications
25% off Member Price
Complimentary CPFO Webinars
(2) Complimentary Per Year
GFOA Ethics e-Learning
Access to CPFO Online Forum - New in 2021
Access to CPFO Networking Events
Access to Exclusive CPFO Collaboration Tools
Access to CPFO Volunteer Assignments at GFOA
I have a recommendation about a new Engagement credit activity. How can I submit the information?
Please email us. We will work with the CPFO oversight committee to evaluate recommendations.