Topical Thoughts from MICPA President & CEO, Bob Doyle What About...Bob?

Advocating for YOU in Lansing

 

Bob_Doyle_Testimony

Last Tuesday (July 28, 2020) I had the great opportunity to testify before the Senate Regulatory Reform Committee to express the CPA profession’s concerns with Senate Bill 40. The hearing was held in the Capitol, utilizing appropriate COVID safety precautions. I love visiting Michigan’s Capitol! It’s such a cool building that is full of history. I always get excited walking into the building, from my first field trip tour in 3rd grade to the awesome opportunity I had in high school to participate in a model legislative session on the Senate floor as part of the Boys’ State program. This hearing took place in the original room where the Michigan Supreme Court met; so cool! 

The hearing went very well. (Please see a copy of my official testimony here.) https://micpa.org/docs/site/government-relations/micpa-testimony-on-sb-40-final.pdf?sfvrsn=aea849c4_2 The legislation would grant authority to the appointed Law Review Commission to evaluate all proposed legislation that would impact occupational licensing in Michigan. Here are more details: 

Changing the standards in Michigan could inhibit Michigan CPAs from practicing across state lines without obtaining additional licensure. SB 40 would create additional hurdles for Michigan to adhere to the Uniform Accountancy Act (UAA) in state statute. The CPA profession prides itself on the consistent standard of work that is provided across all 55 licensing jurisdictions, which is made possible by the UAA. 

Additionally, the proposed legislation states “a program of certification does not prevent a noncertified individual from performing the lawful occupation of an individual who holds a certification for compensation, but that individual may not use the title certified”. Article 7 of the Occupational Code prohibits an individual from performing public accounting without appropriate certification and licensure. 

As CPAs, you are qualified by education, examination and experience which elevate the level of service provided to the public. The general public will not understand that an individual performing public accounting without the title “certified” is not required to meet the same qualifications as a Certified Public Accountant and thus, expect the same quality of service from both individuals.  

After my statement, the bill sponsor (Sen. Theis) thanked me for the testimony and suggested that she could work with the MICPA on a solution where there could be an exemption of licenses that are issued in 45 or more jurisdictions. This is a solution that would address our concerns.  

I’ll keep you updated, and we will continue to serve as the CPA voice in Lansing and work tirelessly to protect the profession. Thank you for your support! I also wanted to thank Rachel Reardon, MICPA’s senior manager of government relations and John Lindley from Public Affairs Associates for their great work advocating for CPAs in the state and developing our case against this bill. 

All the best, 

Bob

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