Walden University Army CAFR Finance and Budgeting Discussion

Walden University Army CAFR Finance and Budgeting Discussion

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Walden University Army CAFR Finance and Budgeting Discussion

need solid responses to these 2 discussion posts, with APA formatting and citations, additional resources would be helpful

1. I selected the Army’s CAFR for FY 2018. The U.S. Army is a multifaceted organization with numerous contributing entities to meet strategic and operational objectives that support the defense of our nation. The Army’s CAFR is a general purpose external financial report. This type of report is formulated for users that the government is accountable to such as the U.S. Citizens, legislative representatives and investors (Genito, M., 2013).

As Mikesell, J. L. (2018) states the budget should outline how funding is supporting the strategic goals and programs that are of importance to stakeholders. The fiscal year 2018 CAFR highlights at the forefront of the document the objectives, strategic goals and results of the Army that strengthens its capabilities to fulfill their obligation to the nation (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018). This is accompanied by an in-depth structure of the Headquarters, Department of the Army Army Commands, Component Commands,and direct reporting units (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018). Mikesell, J. L. (2018) indicates a CAFR should have balance sheets that provide the value and liabilities of assets of the organization. The Army’s CAFR contains balance sheets broken down by personnel (military & civilian), training, equipment, infrastructure, families, housing, and recruiting (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018). This provides the stakeholders a detailed look at where tax dollars are going and if the fund dispersement matches the strategic goals and objectives the Army indicated on their budget request to Congress. Throughout each of these categories a past and progressive year report is provided that covers two years previous spending in that category and projected spending over the next five years (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018). A portion that is of particular note to stakeholders is the on hand excess inventory. This portion outlines excess, obsolete and beyond repair inventory that essentially requires disposal of various means (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018). The past and progressive year graphic show if what years it has increased and decreased. This is important because it serves as a checks and balances for waste and abuse of funds. For example, I work in the technology field. We are expected to have a high turn over of materials because technology always changes. However, if we invest in things that cannot grow and change with us by providing software or hardware updates the process of procurement and planning should be evaluated.

General purpose external financial reports require an independent auditor that evaluates the financial reporting of the organization to ensure it is a fair representation (Genito, M., 2013). The U.S. Army’s fiscal year 2018 CAFR has an independent auditors report at the end of the document that is conducted by KPMG LLP (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018). The independent audit fulfills the obligations of accurate financial representation assessment and provides material weaknesses in the funding balances and recommended changes (Headquarters, Department of the Army, 2018).

Genito, M. (2013, February). Back to basics: An overview of governmental accounting and financial reporting. Retrieved from http://www.gfoa.org/sites/default/files/GFR_FEB_13_48.pdf

Headquarters, Department of the Army. (2018). Fiscal Year 2018 United States Army Annual Financial Report. Retrieved from https://comptroller.defense.gov/Portals/45/Documen…

Mikesell, J. L. (2018). Fiscal administration: Analysis and applications for the public sector (10th ed.). Boston, MA: Wadsworth

2. As we learned this week, in the United States, all of the states and their local governments are required by law to submit a Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). These CAFR’s work to let those both internal and external stakeholders know exactly how the various resources are being allocated, therefore these documents must be made public for all to be able to interpret as they see fit.

For the purposes of this discussion, I have analyzed the State of Michigan’s CAFR from the end of FY 2018, which ended back on September 30, 2018. I have lived in Metro Detroit Michigan for all of my life (26 years), and it has definitely been exciting to see all of the changes that have occurred over the years, and now I have the opportunity to analyze exactly how these changes have come about.

After reading over this document, it is clear that the purpose of the conduction of this report is to utilize auditing standards based on the criteria set forth by the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles. The State of Michigan has a responsibility to its constituents and agency members to ensure that the financial reports are free from misstatement. As Mikesell (2018) highlights, “Each government has some method for making these fiscal choices, although the degree of formality varies widely. But we do know what the budget process ought to be doing– moving resources to the best advantage of the population”.

The financial statements within this document follow basic doubly entry bookkeeping, in that they show assets and liabilities of the governmental agencies. Building upon what we learned this week, double entry bookkeeping allows a visualization of the two accounts that any transaction impacts. In totality, the State of Michigan’s CAFR outlines how resources were allocated for the previous fiscal year, and highlights the projects and priorities that expect to be undertaken heading into the next. Although lengthy, I believe that this is a document that all constituents should be somewhat familiar with. This document allows an in depth look into how closely elected officials are representing the needs that they were voted to uphold for the people that voted them into office.


Mikesell, J. L. (2018). Fiscal administration: Analysis and applications for the public sector (10th ed.). Boston, MA: Wadsworth.

State of Michigan. (2018). State of Michigan comprehensive annual financial report. Retrieved from https://www.michigan.gov/documents/budget/2018_FINAL_CAFR_Links_Reduced_5-10-2019_654889_7.pdf

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