FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. The outgoing president of the Government Finance Officers Association strongly denounced attempts by individual states to create their own accounting standards, emphasizing the issuer group's embrace of generally accepted accounting principles for states and localities that are set by the Government Accounting Standards Board.

Speaking at the GFOA's annual conference here, Charles Cox, who steps down as the group's president today, argued that attempts to create state-level GAAP standards in order to avoid "unpleasant" budget implications of having to comply with certain GAAP standards particularly GASB Statement 45 on retiree health care benefits would result in so-called qualified audit opinions, which can mean that the accounting standards used to craft the financial document are subpar.

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