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The “C” in “Comprehensive Annual Financial Report” Doesn’t Mean “For Nerds Only”! Short Preview/Review Sampler (July 27, 2019).

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This post will be further edited after publishing.  I made a decision to “just publish” July 27, 2019. It has enough content for relevant reading. Links are all present, not all quotes have been included or smoothly formatted towards the end.  Bonus material keeps surfacing…and I am reporting in part on short-term (half-year) Workgroups on Custody (in one state) and trying to encourage all to, if necessary, take crash-courses on CAFRs and how government works, in part because of how it’s been working up til now!

This post came from More, Some Earlier, Sidebar Widgets Now Live Here (+ See Related July 9 post) [This one, Published July 19, 2019](shortlink ends “-ahh”) but you certainly don’t need that excuse to read it.  The terms CAFR, GFOA, GASB are searchable on this blog; look for posts with some of those acronyms in a title.

 

re: ‘TWO HELPFUL LINKS’ — Image from TopRightSidebar, ‘GO TO POSTS’ widget, shows TOC 2019 & 2018 + ‘Key Posts 2012-2017’ (LGH, @ Sept. 1, 2019)

TWO HELPFUL LINKS added Sept. 1, 2019 (for recent subject matter overview):

 Table of Contents 2019, Family Court Matters’ Posts + Pages: January 1 – August 31 (so far). (Shortlink ends “-ayV.”  About 6,300 words,posted August 5, updated Aug. 31) (You can also link to this TOC post any time from the top right sidebar, under”GO TO: All Posts, incl. Sticky, Tables of Contents..” widget, which holds several boxes for navigating to specific important places (posts or pages, incl. the home page), and, 

(Table of Contents2018, Posts and Pages.. (publ. 24Mar2019, short-link ends ‘9y7’)


 

 

This Post is:  The “C” in “Comprehensive Annual Financial Report” Doesn’t Mean “For Nerds Only”! Short Pre-|Review Sampler. (Published July 27, 2019) (short-link ends “-ajs”) (about 8,500 words)

No, it certainly doesn’t.  CAFRs are not just for nerds!


I’ve been working some of these topics long enough that it’s second nature to know where to look and how to find illustrations; I have a labeling syntax, stored folders with date and time (for most), try to save all originating links.  Wrestling text (alone) or text and images into pleasant-looking blog posts is another matter; doing so with a nice, friendly tone and voice isn’t going to happen. Being sweet and friendly, long-suffering and above all patient seems just inappropriate to the situations developing right now in family courts inside and outside the USA.  Some mental lights need to start going on outside the assigned, typically given more “take-it-on-faith” leeway standard experts canvassing the country for recruits and trying to, as ever, federalize and internationalize their pet perspectives on “what happened?!?” when kids are getting hurt by virtue of decisions made within the family court system and NOT made regarding some of the same actions in the criminal system.

Private court divisions and sytems which have only been set up “just in time” for welfare reform are now embedded, so the debate about DIS-embedding them would affect existing political powers in, probably, every state.

Lack of understanding of other countries’ systems or innovators (i.e., private associations featuring civil servants), similar-sounding but different-meaning terms (like “family courts”!) and differences in levels of public accountability (theoretical at least) for private associations a.k.a. foundations/charities/societies), is an issue.

Similarly lack of understanding differences in systems of taxation — i.e., government itself — particularly when it comes to federal vs. state or (Canada) provinces or (UK) the various countries involved blurs the significance of what is taking place now, but which has been set in process decades earlier.  In other words, people who were thinking beyond their own generation of what they wanted the world (and I can speak for, the United States) to look like, are getting what they wanted now — chaos, division, exploitation, and, generally, a population which doesn’t bother or cannot read its own country’s financials, and know when it’s been lied to through withholding, or told the truth.  THAT’s a gullible population which can be prodded into voting against its own best interests nearly any time of day or night. What I’m saying — “it’s a massive cattle drive.”

“News Flash” Businesses charge fees and may charge enough to pay their own taxes (and still make a profit) but it’s governments who have the power to tax.  So businesses will ALWAYS be interested in keeping a hand in and on government affairs.  Businesses are always also interested in profits, which means workers remaining employees — not competitors; so population control, breeding, domestication, and education, are of course going to be key interests.

We can’t (logically) just “bail” on all skills involved in finding and reading financial statements (either public or private) and understanding where one intersects with the other (i.e., organizing principles) and expect to have some form of “justice” long-term.

CAFRs represent the government part.  They have a message to tell; they are not just for nerds.*

* UrbanDictionary definition * Wikipedia

nerd is a person seen as overly intellectual, obsessive, introverted or lacking social skills. Such a person may spend inordinate amounts of time on unpopular, little known, or non-mainstream activities, which are generally either highly technical, abstract, or relating to topics of science fiction or fantasy, to the exclusion of more mainstream activities.[1][2][3] Additionally, many so-called nerds are described as being shy, quirky, pedantic, and unattractive.[4]

Originally derogatory, the term “nerd” was a stereotype, but as with other pejoratives, it has been reclaimed and redefined by some as a term of pride and group identity. ..

Some of the stereotypical behaviors associated with the “nerd” stereotype have correlations with the symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome or other autism-spectrum disorders.[25]

Looking up Hans Asperger (Austrian pediatrician active during Nazi era, his paper on Asperger’s pre-dated another’s on Autism):  “Hans Asperger, National Socialism, and ‘race hygiene’ in Nazi-era Vienna” by Herwig Czech in Molecular Autism 9: article 29 (2018):  Wow… Read the Abstract! and (not too surprising).


That subject deserves its own post. Apart from the stunning similarities to situations today, the back-story on the article is about the journal it’s in “Molecular Autism”, and the co-chief editors. The co-editor in chief from the UK, who’s made a career, basically developing theories and running centers featuring Autism (with Asperger’s being deemed on the AS — Autism Spectrum), was until 2016 married to a well-known and apparently loved family rights lawyer and “OBE” Bridget Lindley (she died, unfortunately and suddenly, at home, in 2016. That’s not the story but should also be explored for fuller understanding of how these things can still be…)

Illuminating article for sure, and situation, and its formal layout (and being open-access) is definitely appreciated..


Don’t wait for any Governor, judge, Secretary of State (it comes up here as chairing a task force) and in general, I believe it’s fair to say, owner (editor in chief or publisher) of ANY major business media, to invite people to go look for the local government entities’ (plural) CAFRs, then move it up a few notches at a time, or even sideways (i.e., from City to County to State, and all the cross-jurisdictional ones inbetween, plus those school districts which (did you realize?) are generally not accounted for as part of county governments in the USA.


I respond and post snapshots by cell-phone as well, but these are typically not so well annotated and are certainly not so well organized and labeled.  YET…. As I said (<~near top of the last post), I’m nice enough to work harder on the (blog) format, but not nice enough to shut up on the subject matter.

Preview:

I’d mentioned the topic again in the ‘Sidebar’ post (link in previous paragraph) and wanted a refresher on why they matter, just a flavor. Towards the top, I use a few acronyms (CAFR, GFOA, MD&A, etc.).  If you don’t recognize them, keep reading, they are explained later in the post; they’re all related, and the three I just listed are all related to the first one:  Comprehensive Audited Financial Reports, one section of which is the MD&A. I moved this material here to elaborate briefly on a just three different sources each giving a different perspectives of CAFRs.

Those links up front:   Of Just Three Sources:  One seemed intent to leave a sour aftertaste and scare people away (odd, considering where it was published, in “Governing.com“), another gave a short business “Purpose of the CAFR” summary (from “BizFluent.com“) and one is from the association that evaluates CAFR quality (“GFOA“) which thankfully, through naming its latest “Certificate of Excellence/CAFR Program” awardees, links to a sortable (by any column) database with links to pick any one and look at it.  Sources are from different years; all links repeated, most also quoted, below.  All three obtained from a basic Google search which itself shows the term IS well-known.. depending on who you are.

Then I added a segment to remind readers of  the significance and connections between the regionalization of the USA and the build-up of the department of HHS (with massive influence on anything children or family, of course), which due to HHS’s history brought up Reorganization & Regionalization.  The  Reorganization Act is key in US history, refers only to the Executive Branch, but what happens there impacts the whole country due to the economic structure, i.e. Federal/State and Public/Private relationships.  That segment emphasizes also why CAFRs, which show size and scope of operations, matter. I’ve blogged it, of course. (Search:  “David Mitrany,” among other things and see certain pages/sidebar links).

Here upfront are ALL the links in that sections:  Allgov.com, (on HHS); Securing’ the Nation: Law, Politics, and Organization at the Federal Security Agency, 1939-1953, Federal Regionalism: The Abolishment of Local Government (probably older; BarefootsWorld);**

**from internal reference there, Uniform Law Commission including 2019 acts in process which are likely to impact family law: it’s just a list, no internal links, but does contain bill numbers.  It being current, you might want to make a note: “Legislative Report by Act“.   Internal reference (link broken) to “The Buck Act,” found a Debunking The Story of the Buck Act” By Roger M. Wilcox (software type of guy with wide-ranging interests and a penchant for arguing the logic of any position; admitted atheist and mocking conspiracy/sovereignty theorists, which it seems he says the “Regionalism” reporter (Barefoot’s world) would represent)..The Buck Act has to do with state income tax collections on federally owned property and was passed in 1940).

PREVIEW COMMENTARY on REGIONALIZATION/ Re-ORGANIZATION TIMELINE/IMPACT within the USA:

Regionalization and how different Presidents used their authority under the Reorganization Act (starting probably under the FDR/ New Deal, “Between the Wars” era, i.e., 1930s) is not a new topic to this blog or to many scholars, and public, private or both-sponsored researchers (Think about it: MOST researchers obtain sponsors or give up: it takes equipment, communication infrastructures, internet capacity (of course), and usually a journal (…or fifty), staff, grants-writers, grants-administrators, and all that).  

But, the concepts of regionalization (generally, in the USA) and that what various Presidents have done (and in which decades) under the Reorganization Act in the USA may be unfamiliar to many less elitist or privileged, normal people (parents, “lay” members of the public, working professionals in fields OTHER than law, psychology, higher education, healthcare or social services… or the family court systems) …I’m hoping to reach through this blog and/or social media, for feedback on existing reform systems and encouragement to, on reading about the programs, also understand who’s running them and who or what is sponsoring them.

At most levels, that gets back to some public agency (if not the federal government), which becomes a tax issue. “Show us the money” is THE bottom line of accountability.  CAFRs and us all having some concept of exactly how many entities are operational (and which of them are in name only), how spinoff or new ones are made…is a key part.

THIS LEADS BACK TO THE IMPORTANCE OF READING CAFRs: So we’d best understand how connections and transactions are networked and made from something outside controlled media (or specific university centers which also take ongoing sponsorship and not afraid to name their benefactors… Just, so it would seem, reluctant to divulge any money trail FROM one TO that specific part of the university (“Centers” may be housed under one school, but are often deliberately designed to be university-wide, which, naturally, is impressive — but dilutes the accountability).

[You are still reading the “Preview” section]

Career academics are already who and what they are: often of a mindset I’ve been around (and had) enough to, generally, understand, but a mindset, due to my experiences — symptoms and evidence I couldn’t make go away —  I had to deliberately UNlearn in part, specifically the “if an academic isn’t reporting it, it probably isn’t worth looking into” or the habit of continually trying to redeem (salvage, literally) the moral reputation of whatever institution or profession they are involved (or dealing) with, and dragging along people with them into causes not based on, well, all the available, relevant information.  Causes constructed which only hold water if a lot of that information is just put aside, eliminated, silenced, or dismissed for the sake of an easier-to-swallow thesis and plan.

So, I found about three references to quote on regionalization, two I’ve used and read before, and one I’d like to, although it seems to be in a law review I may or may not have access to as a non-lawyer.  I quote these.  One of the resources, in part, references the Uniform Law Commission.  I’ve referenced before, but included a quote and some images on it.  It also referenced in part, a “1940 Buck Act” as key.  Of the few Google search results on the Buck Act (which was a broken link on  the “Barefoot’s World” Regionalization pages), one was mocking the people who quote it (i.e., sovereign conspiracy theorists). So  I included that too (at least it’s interesting and entertaining).

Looking up the Buck Act a bit further (including here: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/4 and Here (2006 short piece from the IRS to The City of Los Angeles referring to certain sections of US Code Chapter 4 (preceding link) as “the Buck Act” (subsections 105-110 specifically).  That is a search result, it is uploaded to IRS.gov, but I’m not qualified to discuss, although reading a bit more about it did help me understand better.  The Buck Act relates to taxation (do’s and don’ts, can and can’t, basically who ulimately controls federal lands within states (short answer:  the federal government).  When it comes to the domestic violence, field, a “National Health Resource Center” in that field just happened to move to federally-controlled lands in San Francisco before its federal grants began increasing drastically.  I never felt that particular location was coincidental, and (although this is “Preview”) , see next few paragraphs and images.

City and County of SF Opinion NO. 2002-02 on Praesidio Taxes (cites “the Buck Act”). Coherent explanation. “ReadMe” quality.

Because we are in ‘FamilyCourtMatters” here and because among those are domestic violence issues, and because a key DV “resource center” or whatever its (#1984FVPSA (<~for Twitter)) HHS grantee designation is, Futures Without Violence‘s (“Futures,” below) 2010 relocation to the San Francisco Praesidio (along with a name change and more overt international focus on operations) is of major interest and significance.  Because of that, I recommend reading through (it’s clear, large enough print, etc.) a Opinion 2002-02 by the City and County of San Francisco’s Attorney’s “Office of the City Attorney” requested by the Controller on the topic of “Praesidio Taxes.”  Terms like federal enclave, jurisdiction, exclusive legislative control, and some references to the Buck Act are within it.

“Futures” is an HHS partner and among the resource centers on DV, this one is focuses on HEALTH.  From the above link, you can see the emphasis:

The call for abstracts is now open! Submit to speak at the National Conference on Health and Domestic Violence by Monday, July 29th at 11:59pm Pacific Time

Visit nchdv.org for updates on the call for abstracts, registration, travel, and more!

Every two years the National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence hosts the National Conference on Health and Domestic Violence. The Conference highlights the latest research and promising practices to advance the health care system’s response to domestic and sexual violence, bringing together the field’s leading medical, public health, and domestic violence experts from across the United States and the world.

Over 1,100 leaders in the field joined us at the 2017 National Conference on Health and Domestic Violence in San Francisco, CA on September 26th-28th to share their work and learn about the intersecting issues of health and violence. The Conference hosted plenary speakers to discuss the connections between gender-based violence, migration, health access, anti-racism work, and community-based solutions to childhood trauma.

You can also click on Futures’ “Where we are” page (Boston and D.C. as well as the featured SF) and, from that page, that they are also obviously landlords, and taking support from at least two named (in that regard) foundations:  “the Open Square Foundation” and “Blue Shield of California.”  Notice the “around the world” emphasis, although Futures is a California domiciled 501©3 basically supported (majority) by US DHHS and US DOJ grants, as well as exchanging it seems grants with other entities, such as the NCJFCJ.

From human trafficking workshops to judicial training, this venue is designed to share research, knowledge and ‘lessons learned’ garnered by organizations directly confronting the epidemic of gender-based violence.

On the first floor, our 6,000 square foot exhibition hall is in development with support from Blue Shield of California, and will one day feature ongoing interactive exhibits and new technologies designed to share stories from around the world. Programming for the exhibit hall will be designed as a tool for teachers, parents, coaches, and others to engage their students, children, and the general public in critical conversation about the impact of violence and the choices they face in preventing it


Now just one link referencing “FIT” (Families In Transition) StatewideProviders (a key AFCC promoted theme, along with the “high-conflict” designation for more “Focused Interventions”).  Provider list last updated, contains no active links, does not mention who authored or owns any curriculum, or in general, much help other than could be pursued by calling or looking them all up, individually.  “Cute…”  Looking it up (Search Site: https://app.sos.ky.gov/ftsearch/, the only entity by that name (written out) had the extension ” — 38″ and existed 2007 until it was administratively dissolved for not filing in Oct 2017.

I (not for the first time) searched the phrase at both the FoundationCenter.org (outfits in several states; not all referred to divorce education — some to homelessness, etc.) and found at least one where the associated tax return’s business name had no reference to “Families in Transition” (at all). Not for the first time in such a search (results names with no bearing to uploaded tax return names; this happens for multi-million-dollar tax-exempt foundations too, not just small 501©s).  I then did this (by organization name only) at the IRS, a list of 29 surfaced.  In both cases, none were from Kentucky and California had the most.

This is inconclusive:  As the Kentucky Courts website doesn’t identify whether “FIT” is just a program others run (without indicating that its list of providers are actually described by their business names on the list available there), finding out much more would a research project, which doesn’t seem accidental when providing full business entity names (of the statewide providers) — and who owns any such standardized curriculum being run there — could’ve been easily shown!

Before this revision go the court website, I’d been able to look up curriculum providers, which was how I discovered one listed there, business entity address, Georgia, and known to be running classes in (at least) Pennsylvania.  “Go figure” (I refer to “Kid’s First” which I’ve posted on earlier).


I went looking JUST a little further (on-line) this time for who was running those “FIT” classes.  In Bullitt County, Kentucky, a whole page at a single law office (only one lawyer’s name shown) is both telling and disturbing.  There is a “Families In Transition (F.I.T.) Divorce Education Page including a schedule.  The page is dated last March, 2019, and shows classes scheduled through the summer, going to ONLY two individuals (Make checks out to..) Cynthia Feathers @ (a P.O. Box address), and the other, the ONLY other provider listed, is to a Stacie Sylvester, which says “Cash or Money Order Only” and has no address (of the individual being paid) and held out of a Plumbing Office, it seems.  $65.00 each (for parents: kids are free). Spouses must attend separate classes (i.e., $130.00 per required attendance / (divorce or custody modification, or whatever the order requiring attendance says).  They are 4-6 hour classes.

Before the class schedule, a paragraph or two (faint font, as usual) briefly introduces that this lawyer was also divorced, attended a class, and “for further reading” recommends (some classic AFCC stalwarts, and very old ones too:):

For those parents who are concerned about the impact of divorce or legal separation upon the child(ren), I recommend you buy and read The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce: The 25 Year Landmark Study by Judith S. WallersteinJulia M. Lewis, and Sandra BlakesleeThe Unexpected Legacy of Divorce: The 25 Year Landmark Study is the 1st and only long term study of the the impact of divorce on children measured over 25 years where the author interviewed 131 children, ages 3-18 years old when their parents either divorced or decided to remain married even though the relationship was not great. The author(s) interviewed the children at time 0, 5 years later, 10 years later, 15 years later and 25 years later to understand the impact of divorce or legal separation on children over time.

The more disturbing aspect, however is being forced to pay cash or money order to classes held by someone not identified as being a professional, or associated with any business, and at a plumbing company’s office, too.  (The other one is at a Catholic Church).. I’ve (“we’ve” when I include on-line and reviews/comments on various parent education classes) heard complaints of being forced to pay cash, no receipts given (probably no invoices either).  If I lived in Kentucky, I’d get right on that, but this is not my focus in 2019.

 

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