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Become an effective

tribal professional

January - March 2021

This eight-week cohort program provides the opportunity to connect with other tribal peers while gaining knowledge and experience to help become a more effective tribal finance/accounting professional and leader. Because all sessions are available virtually, you’ll be able to learn on your own time and set hours convenient to your schedule.

 

In addition, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with and learn from other tribal finance/accounting professionals throughout the state and across the country. The Zoom chat room with instructors is available for discussion and questions about course material at the end of each week.

 

Register here

 

Registration information

$2,000

 

Registration includes digital instruction, materials, and certificates, one copy of the Financial Reporting and Information Guide for Tribal Governments, and Their Enterprises (Orange Book) as published by the Native American Financial Officers Association will be distributed as part of the registration fee to each participant.

 

Earn up to 45.6 CPE credits.

 

At the end of this program, participants will complete the Qualified Assessment and must receive a score of 70% or higher.

 

Who should attend: 

  • Entry-level employees in tribal financial positions.
  • Professionals who need to acquire increased knowledge regarding tribal finance and accounting (i.e. accountants, lawyers, bankers, etc.) .
  • Elected tribal officials and leaders who wish to better understand the financial side of a business decision. 
  • Agenda

    Week 1 - January 11-15

    Welcome to the OSU Online Introductory Tribal Finance and Accounting Certificate Program

    Welcome Video and Program Agenda/Instructions

    Pre-Test Assessment


    Oklahoma Legal Distinctions

    Wilda Wahpepah, Special Counsel, Sheppard Mullin, Washington, DC

    Theme: Introduction to Tribal Law

    CPE: Business Law


    Ethics for Accounting and Finance Professionals

    Rachel Cox, MS, CPA, Instructor of Professional Practice, School of Accounting, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma

    Theme: Safeguarding the Tribe

    CPE: Regulatory Ethics

     

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 1 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Jan. 15

     

    Week 2 - January 18-22

    Introduction to Tribal Government Accounting & Finance

    Corrine Wilson, CPA, Principal, REDW, Phoenix, Arizona

    Theme: Introduction to Tribal Finance and Accounting

    CPE: Accounting (Governmental)

    Internal Controls & Compliance, Fraud Protection

    Danny Martinez, Managing Director, BKD, LLP, Dallas, Texas

    Theme: Safeguarding the Tribe

    CPE: Accounting

    Preparing Budgets

    Rachel Domnick, Instructor of Professional Practice, School of Accounting, Spears School of Business, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma

    Theme: Essential Topics

    CPE: Accounting

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 2 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Jan. 22

     

    Week 3 - January 25-29

    Overview of Government Accounting

    Michael Madsen, Senior Manager, BKD, LLP, Tulsa, Oklahoma

    Theme: Introduction to Tribal Finance and Accounting

    CPE: Accounting (Governmental)

     

    Auditing Processes and Regulations/Preparing for an Audit

    Patty Wetz, CPA, Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP, Austin, Texas

    Theme: Safeguarding the Tribe

    CPE: Auditing (Governmental)

     

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 3 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Jan. 29

     

    Week 4 - February 1-5

    Importance of Finance and Overview of Tribal Financial Statements

    Patty Wetz, CPA, Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP, Austin, Texas

    Theme: Introduction to Tribal Finance and Accounting 

    CPE: Finance

     

    Effective Record Keeping at Your Tribe

    Corrine Wilson, CPA, Principal, REDW, Phoenix, Arizona

    Theme: Grants and Compliance

    CPE: Accounting

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 4 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Feb. 5

     

    Week 5 - February 8-12

    IRS Tribal Government Tax Guide

    Corrine Wilson, CPA, Principal, REDW, Phoenix, Arizona

    Theme: Safeguarding the Tribe

    CPE: Taxes

    Cost Principles for Tribes

    Corrine Wilson, CPA, Principal, REDW, Phoenix, Arizona

    Theme: Grants and Compliance

    CPE: Accounting

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 5 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Feb. 12

     

    Week 6 - February 15-19

    Federal General Uniform Administrative Requirements

    Corrine Wilson, CPA, Principal, REDW, Phoenix, Arizona

    Theme: Grants and Compliance

    CPE: Accounting (Governmental)

     

    Closing out Grants

    Corrine Wilson, CPA, Principal, REDW, Phoenix, Arizona

    Theme: Safeguarding the Tribe

    CPE: Accounting (Governmental)

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 6 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Feb. 19

     

    Week 7 - February 22-26

    Introduction to Federal Indian Law

    James Nichols, Senior Attorney, Dorsey & Whitney, LLP, Minneapolis, Minnesota

    Theme: Introduction to Tribal Law

    CPE: Business Law

    Best Administrative Grant Practices and Compliance from Tribes

    Alex Hontos, Partner, Dorsey & Whitney, LLP, Minneapolis, Minnesota

    Theme: Grants and Compliance

    CPE: Accounting (Governmental)

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 7 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, Feb. 26

     

    Week 8 - March 1-5

    Indirect Cost Rate Calculation and Negotiation Process

    Scott Huebert, Partner, Finley & Cook, Shawnee, Oklahoma

    Theme: Grants and Compliance

    CPE: Accounting

     

    SEFA – Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards

    Becky Carter, Accounting Manager, Finley & Cook, Shawnee, Oklahoma

    Theme: Grants and Compliance

    CPE: Auditing (Governmental)

    Zoom Q&A Session with Week 8 Instructors 11 a.m. (CST) Friday, March 5

     

    Final Items

    Qualified Assessment: Must receive a score of 70% or higher

    Overall Program Evaluation

    Post-Test Assessment

  • Objectives

    Auditing Processes and Regulations/Preparing for an Audit

    Many tribes consider their audit to be a necessary evil; it has to be done, but it disrupts their day-to-day operations. This session will break down the audit process and explain the various components of the audit, including providing insight into the different processes as it relates to the single audit as well as the financial audit. This session will also emphasize incorporating schedules and checklists into your monthly and year-end close process which can then be provided to your auditor as part of your PBC (Prepared By Client) list.

     

    Attendees will:

    • Identify the tasks involved in preparing for an audit
    • Recognize schedules and checklists for the monthly and year-end close-out process

    Best Administrative Grant Practices and Compliance from Tribes

    The federal government awards grants and other assistance awards for more than $500 billion annually. With those funds come a host of compliance obligations, regulatory and statutory requirements, and the potential for audits, enforcement actions, and investigations. This presentation will provide an overview of the rules of the road for federal grantees – the OMB Uniform Guidance – with an emphasis on those areas that create the most headache for tribes and create regulatory risk. This session will also introduce some of the types of federal grant programs most relevant to tribes, including the Indian Housing Block Grant and Indian Community Development Block Grant.

     

    Attendees will:

    • Identify the intent of what is the meaning of the Super Circular
    • List what the potential impacts of your organization are to noncompliance of a grant
    • Name at least two ways you can keep the mandatory disclosure rule and avoid harm to your organization

    Closing Out Grants

    In this section, attendees will hear what tribal preparations are needed for the final months of participation in a federal grant. The topics covered include a suggested timeline to implement at your tribe, what tribes should consider regarding personnel responsibilities, no-cost extensions, fulfilling matching requirements, financial closeouts, and program elements.

     

    Attendees will:

    • Recognize the components of a grant lifecycle
    • Identify components and important issues of grant management and grant close-outs
    • List components in the case study of FEMA to identify problems and solutions that could occur in the grant award and compliance process

    Cost Principles for Tribes

    This section provides an introduction to the cost principles that apply to tribal governments and other tribal-federal award recipients outlined in the OMB Uniform Guidance. This training will cover general principles governing cost – including costs that require prior approval, direct cost charging, indirect cost groupings and proper allocation bases. It will also identify unallowable costs, how to properly document expenses, and how agencies apply the costs principles as they administer the grant and cooperative agreement.

     

    Attendees will:

    • Identify the concepts central to federal cost principles
    • Distinguish costs associated with direct and indirect costs
    • List cost principles and support answers on direct and indirect costs with citations

    Effective Record Keeping at Your Tribe

    This session aims to assist tribal governments in understanding what information they are required to maintain and how having an accurate recording of information not only fulfills the OMB Uniform Guidance requirements but also protects the tribe.


    Attendees will:

    • Recall what a “record” is in today’s tribal government
    • Identify federal grant and self-determination record retention time requirements
    • Recognize records a tribe is required to keep to maintain a strong financial management system

    Ethics for Accounting and Finance Professionals

    This session uses interactive case studies to explore methods for resolving ethical dilemmas. The session covers obstacles to making and carrying out ethical decisions, identifies pitfalls in ethical decision making and includes questions that can help clarify appropriate routes for dealing with dilemmas.


    Attendees will:

    • Recall definition of “ethics”
    • Name at least five of the 10 steps in the AICPA’s Ethical Decision-Making Model
    • Identify six pillars of the AICPA code

    Federal General Uniform Administrative Requirements

    The OMB Uniform Guidance (2 CFR § 200) streamlined and consolidated government requirements for receiving and using federal funds. 


    Attendees will:

    • Identify the key Uniform Grant Guidance Subparts
    • Distinguish and recognize key aspects in regard to cost principles, record keeping, indirect costs and close out grants

    Importance of Finance and Overview of Tribal Financial Statements

    It is crucial for the Tribe to be financially literate to best utilize its resources for the betterment of its people. Financial education efforts are linked to economic incentives. Government accounting standards and principles and how they are applied to tribes will be presented. This session will help leaders understand financial statements, including the statement of net position (balance sheet) and the statement of activities (income statement). This session will also help leaders understand the flow of information included in the financial statements, including required supplemental information and financial statement disclosures.


    Attendees will:

    • Recognize the financial statements included in Governmental Funds, Proprietary Funds, and Fiduciary Funds
    • Identify the 2 methods of reporting Component Units

    Indirect Cost Rate Calculation and Negotiation Process

    Indirect Cost can inevitably benefit your grant funded programs and organization fiscal health. Understanding these costs and how to manage them will help you prepare accurate budgets for your funding agencies. Most importantly, you will gain a thorough understanding of how Indirect Cost is charged to the programs, how the Tribe spends those dollars, and why it is so important to the Tribe.


    Attendees will:

    • Recognize the definition of indirect cost
    • Recall how an indirect cost rate is determined
    • Identify indirect costs and how they are charged to programs

    Internal Controls & Compliance, Fraud Protection

    Internal controls are the key to success so an entity’s governing elected officials or board of directors, management and personnel may receive some assurance regarding achievement of objections related to operations, reporting and compliance matters. The objectives are affected by a control environment, risk assessment, control activities, information and communication and monitoring. Fraud prevention is an ongoing cycle involving monitoring, detection, management of cases and learning to prevent further fraud in the future. Learn to recognize and protect finances when possible to avoid being vulnerable and take preventive measures to avoid risk.

     

    Attendees will:

    • Define internal controls
    • Recognize the COSO framework components and definitions
    • List the primary areas of internal controls

    Introduction to Federal Indian Law

    This session will help you understand the basic framework of Federal Indian law, including tribal jurisdiction, Indian land holdings, and sovereign immunity. These concepts will be explored through a discussion of economic development in Indian Country.


    Attendees will:

    • Recall what the term Federal Indian Law refers to
    • Recognize the different powers of Tribal Sovereignty
    • List what purposes tribal gaming net revenues are to be used for

    Introduction to Tribal Government Accounting & Finance

    Corporate finance and tribal finance has many similarities. However, tribal finance and accounting has its own particular characteristics. This session is an introduction to tribal finance and the anomalies associated with tribal finance operations. The objective of accounting is to collect, analyze and communicate financial information to financial statement users for decision-making and to raise and invest funds for their businesses. As the tribal financial and/or accounting officer, one must be as objective as possible and help others understand the financial scene in making political and financial decisions.


    Attendees will:

    • Identify the characteristics that an organization may have one or more of to be a governmental organization
    • Recall examples of legally separate entities in financial reporting
    • Recognize the unique aspects of tribes that impact financial management

    IRS Tribal Government Tax Guide

    This session provides an overview of the IRS Division for Tribal Governments and its tribal specific publications that impact tribes, including guidance on Tribal Council member payments, payments to election boards, payments to tribal boards or committees, per capita payments, tribal gaming reporting – tips and winnings, 1099 versus W-2’s, and the Indian Tribal Governmental Tax Status Act. Also reviewed will be tribal government pensions under the Pension Act, and the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act provisions.


    Attendees will:

    • Recall W2 and 1099 filings
    • Identify tribal government pensions under the Pension Act as taxable or non-taxable
    • Recognize the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act provisions

    Oklahoma Legal Distinctions

    This session will explore how the principles of federal Indian law differs in Oklahoma. The legal status of “Indian country,” the organization of tribes and the administration of tribal land will be discussed.  We will touch on the unique history of Oklahoma tribes and the tribal-state jurisdictional relationship and contrast this to national norms.


    Attendees will:

    • Recall the unique legal history of Oklahoma tribes
    • Match the discussed tribal cases to their content matter

    Overview of Government Accounting

    All tribal nations need to be able to provide accurate, current and complete financial disclosures.  This session will address government funds, proprietary funds, and fiduciary funds. Government fund accounting may include the general fund, special revenue funds, capital projects, debt service, and permanent funds. Proprietary funds (enterprise funds) address the fact that tribes charge customers for the services it provides (external customers, or members/units of tribes). Fiduciary funds are used to report assets held in a trustee or agency capacity. Other accounting fundamentals covered in this session include budgeting, general journal, general ledger, statement of net position, statement of activities, accounts payable, payroll, receipts, cash vs. accrual accounting methods, etc.


    Attendees will:

    • List the three bases of accounting and identify which is not used in GAAP
    • Match each fund type as either a Governmental Fund, a Proprietary Fund, or a Fiduciary Fund and what basis of accounting those funds use

    Preparing Budgets

    Budgets are important to the operation of an enterprise whose budget cycle may include preparation and submission, approval, execution and audit and evaluation. In this course, you will gain an introduction to the budget process and learn elements of a budget cycle. You will learn about a mid-year budget review and year end budget review. Budget tools and a review of a budget worksheet will also be covered.  


    Attendees will:

    • Recall the budgeting calendar cycle
    • Match the components in mid-year and year-end budget reviews
    • Recognize budget tools and their levels

    SEFA – Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards

    The Schedule of Expenditures of Federal Awards (SEFA) is a report detailing the federal money spent by each agency during the audit period. This report is a vital piece of information for the auditors in their planning of your annual audit.


    Attendees will:

    • Recognize components of the SEFA schedule workpaper
    • Identify how this report is used by federal agencies
  • Advisory Board

    Patty Wetz, Senior Manager, Baker Tilly Virchow
    Jay Hannah, Executive Vice President, Financial Services, BancFirst
    Joel Haaser, Managing Director, BKD CPA's
    Tralynna Scott, Treasurer, Cherokee Nation
    Mike Wood, Accounting Lead, Workforce Development, Chickasaw Nation
    Martin Tucker, Senior Director of Finance and Accounting, Choctaw Nation
    Mary Chisholm, Assistant Director of Finance, Citizen Potawatomi Nation
    James Nichols, Senior Attorney, Dorsey & Whitney LLP
    Kirke Kickingbird, Of Counsel, Hobbs Straus Dean & Walker LLP
    Nicole Elliott, Partner, Holland & Knight LLP
    Eli McIntosh, Chairman, Oklahoma Tribal Finance Consortium and Member, Muscogee (Creek) Nation
    Emery Real Bird, Financial Management Policy Specialist, NAFOA
    Tasha Fox, Controller, Osage Nation
    W. Harrison Perry, Finance Director, Pawnee Nation
    Corrine Wilson, Principal, REDW
    Kyle Coody, Treasurer, Seminole Nation
    Lacey Horn, Chairwoman, Treasury Tribal Advisory Committee
    Lindsay Robertson, Faculty Director, Center for the Study of American Indian Law and Policy, University of Oklahoma

  • Program policies

    If a participant would like to cancel her/his registration less than 10 days prior to the program, you are welcome to send a substitute. A refund is available given notification no later than 11 days prior to the program. If you are cancelling your registration or transferring your registration to a colleague, please contact the OSU Center for Executive and Professional Development at 405-744-5208 or cepd@okstate.edu. CEPD will send you an email confirming your cancellation and refund if applicable.

     

    For more information regarding administrative policies such as complaints, please contact the assistant program manager, Lindsey Ray at 405-744-5208 or lindssk@okstate.edu.

     

    The program content is appropriate for entry level employees and those looking to gain an understanding in tribal finance and accounting. For CPE purposes, the knowledge level of the course is "basic". There is no prerequisite education/experience. A pre-test will be shared with program participants by the program administratory after registration and prior to attendance.

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