Association of Government Accountants (AGA) Definition
The Associate of Government Accountants is a financial professional non-profit organization for accountants working for the United States Government or any other government. The work of the AGA is to further its members’ interests in various areas like events, publications, training, community-building efforts, and awards.
A Little More on What is the Association of Government Accountants (AGA)
The Association of Government Accountants was established in the year 1950, and it has its base in Alexandria, Virginia. The AGA focuses its efforts on providing professional education and standards to ensure competency in governmental accounting.
It provides its members with a number of professional resources such as certifications, continuing education opportunities, among others, to help them further their skills, career, goals, and networking.
The AGA members are committed to ensuring that there is transparency and accountability in auditing and development accounting. Its commitment is also to ensure that there is an improvement in the administration and organization of government financial management.
AGA organization also awards a professional designation known as Certified Government Financial Manager. Since 1994, this credential has been used to measure the competency of its holders working in the federal, local, and state governments. The competency is measured in areas such as:
- Government accounting
- Internal controls
- Financial reporting
It also has its journal known as the Journal of Government Financial Management, produced quarterly every year. Generally, the AGA education and training programs, help members to advance their careers, and at the same time build their skills.
The main goal of the AGA organization is to ensure that the financial professions working for the government direct their effort on increasing the governments’ financial accountability and performance. It encourages changes that benefit the governments they work for as well as the citizens. AGA has its presence in the following regions:
- United States- East Coast
- United States-West Coast
- United States-Midwest
- United States-South
- United States-South
What does AGA Do?
AGA provides various resource materials for its members, including the general public, through its website. The resource materials are for promoting education as well as awareness of government accountability.
In addition, it provides survey and research results, checklists, as well as toolkits in a simple format. It also offers training and professional certification to qualifying individuals.
The AGA certification is recommended for those accountants working in:
- The federal government
- The state government
- The local government
- International government financial management.
About the Association’s Membership
The association today enjoys a membership of over 14,000 people with various roles, expertise, and titles. The membership register is made up of the following group of people:
- Senior executives
- Elected officials
- Mid-level managers
- Entry-level employees
Note that members in the above groups are professionals working in government financial management areas such as:
- Financial reporting
- Information systems
- Performance reporting
- Contract management
The AGA membership can be broken down as follows:
42% of the AGA members work in the local and state governments
28% of the AGA members work in the federal government
18% of the AGA members work in private sectors
12% of the AGa members are students and retirees
AGA members’ interaction and networking are through national events, local chapters, as well as taking the role of leadership in organizations. Each year over 2,000 members usually attend the financial professional development conference organized by the association.
AGA Membership Eligibility
AGA has different types of membership, and any viable individual who meets the requirements is eligible to join the association. The membership types include the following:
Government: This membership is available to those individuals working directly for academia, government entity, or non-profit organization. Also included are contractors working for the mention groups. It has a membership fee of $100 paid yearly.
Private Sector: This membership is for sole proprietors as well as those individuals working in private firms, partnerships, or corporations. It has a membership fee of $160 pain annually.
Young Professional: This membership is available for young workers with experience for less than three years. It has a membership fee of $35 paid every year.
Student: This membership is for full-time university and college students without employment. Its membership is free.
Retired: This is membership is available for members who are in permanent retirement, but they are still members of AGA. It has a membership fee of $35 paid yearly.
Lifetime: This membership is awarded to those individuals who have been AGA members for 40 consecutive years. The award of this membership is done in January each year to recognize their commitment and service to AGA. The membership is free.
Reference for “Association of Government Accountants (AGA)”
Academics research on “Association of Government Accountants (AGA)”
Unrest in government accounting, Foltin, C. (2008). Unrest in government accounting. The CPA Journal, 78(3), 26.
Assessing the value of the CGFM designation, Johnson, L. E., & c Brooks, R. (2001). Assessing the value of the CGFM designation. The Journal of Government Financial Management, 50(3), 28.
State and local government fraud survey for 1995, Ziegenfuss, D. E. (1996). State and local government fraud survey for 1995. Managerial Auditing Journal, 11(9), 50-55. Reports on a questionnaire survey of US local government auditors conducted to determine the amount of fraud in state and local governments. Concludes that fraud is a significant problem for state and local governments and finds that management is not responding effectively to “red flags” or to the actual frauds when they are discovered; most of the loss in fraud cases is accounted for by misappropriation of funds, other false representation, other fraud, or false invoices. The most effective fraud detection methods include: internal audit review; specific investigation by management; employee notification; internal controls; and accidental discovery. Finds that most of the legal departments of the government entities studied did not have policies and procedures for dealing with employees suspected of fraud.
A survey of governmental accounting education studies, Henry, B. K. (2005). A survey of governmental accounting education studies. Journal of Public Budgeting, Accounting & Financial Management, 17(2), 166-179. This paper provides an overview of several studies on governmental accounting education. These studies have focused on the lack of attention devoted to the coverage of governmental and nonprofit accounting (GNP) topics in business school programs at U. S. colleges and universities. Despite numerous calls for action from a wide array of stakeholders, the research has found only marginal progress in broadening the coverage of governmental accounting at most institutions.
Improving performance reporting for government: new guidance and resources, Fountain, J. R., Patton, T. K., & Steinberg, H. I. (2004). Improving performance reporting for government: new guidance and resources. The Journal of Government Financial Management, 53(1), 60.