Representing Montana at the AICPA

By Jane Egan, Executive Director

Jane Egan

Jane Egan
Executive Director

Every year our members are represented at three AICPA Council meetings:

  • Regional Council in March
  • Spring Council in May, and
  • Fall Council in October.

You are represented by your Elected Council Member (Ron Yates), your Designated Council Member (President Paul Nisbet) and by me, as your executive director.

Ron, Paul and I attended the one-day Regional Council meeting in Los Angeles on March 21st.  Regional Council is a much smaller group of attendees–AICPA leadership, western states’ Council members and state society executive directors–so it allows for great discussions and a deeper dive into the issues.

So what are the current issues?

The AICPA Chair, Bill Balhoff, opened the meeting with thoughts about the importance of quality in the CPA profession and he outlined how the AICPA’s initiatives will promote and enhance quality.

AICPA President, Barry Melancon is well-known for his outstanding professional issues update.  Many of you saw this first-hand at the 100th Anniversary meeting last June. At Regional Council Barry focused on areas that directly impact our profession’s ability to grow, compete and succeed, highlighting:

  • the CPA brand,
  • federal advocacy,
  • financial reporting,
  • market place issues,
  • practicing monitoring of the future,
  • the audit environment and
  • the future of learning.

A town-hall styled meeting on the Raising of the Profession’s Quality Factor was led by Bill Balhoff and AICPA VP of Public Practice and Global Alliances, Sue Coffey. The discussion centered on changes to peer review and practice monitoring. We discussed the current trends and expected challenges facing the profession from a regulatory perspective and long- and short-term quality enhancement plans.

We attended a session focused on the Future of Learning: Forging New Learning Requirements for the Profession. We participated in discussion groups and were given this request:

Given the Future of Learning key themes and related implications outlined today, the task force believes that the profession’s continued vitality requires evolving the way we engage, develop, deliver, and measure learning and development of CPAs. We are seeking Council members’ input on the following:

    1. What are the opportunities and challenges of evolving to a competency-based output CPE model?
    2.  How could the AICPA evolve its current CPE requirements for membership to include different types of learning?
      Consider the 70/20/10 model
      70% = Experiential (eg, on the job); 20% = Informal (eg, mentoring); 10% = Formal (eg, group study)
    3.  What other input would you provide the Board as it considers a broader interpretation of AICPA’s CPE requirements?

We’ll continue to explore these issues at Spring Council in May. Stay tuned for more updates from Council Meetings. Until then, please contact me ( if you have questions and/or want more in-depth information on any of these items.

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