Advocacy Efforts Show Love for CPAs
An Ignite Blog by Natasha Schamberger, CPA
KSCPA CEO & President
We’ve had decades of advocacy success. It’s not just tax and audit professionals that we advocate for, it’s the overall CPA profession. Over the years, the volunteers on the KSCPA Advocate Task Force and the Legislative Committees have built influence with the legislature, positioning our CPA community as a strong sounding board and trusted informational resource. While certainly not exhaustive, here is a rundown of the impact KSCPA’s advocacy activities have had over the decades.
Advocacy refers to taking action to ensure our voices are heard on issues that are important to us, especially when decisions are being made about our lives, our businesses and the communities we serve. Let me count the ways KSCPA’s advocacy efforts show love for CPAs and our accounting profession.
1. Advocacy is helping legislators make informed decisions. Policymakers rely on their constituents and other stakeholders to inform their decision-making. CPA expertise helps to avoid unintended consequences of new or changing policies.
KSCPA Goal: Position KSCPA members as trusted experts to outline and explain practical implications of policies.
2. Advocacy is educating policymakers on key issues for the profession. Working with the AICPA and other professional organizations, the KSCPA provides information to and educates federal, state and local policymakers regarding key issues that are important to CPAs.
3. Advocacy is monitoring proposals that are introduced and keeping members informed. You don’t have time to watch the legislative process unfold every day – that’s why KSCPA does it for you. Marlee Carpenter, KSCPA’s legislative consultant, Rita Barnard, KSCPA Manager, Analytics and Monitoring, and I, alongside the KSCPA Advocate Task Force, are diligently working on your behalf behind the scenes as your eyes and ears.
KSCPA Goal: Garner support for the profession’s legislative priorities (e.g. exclusion of accounting, auditing and other professional services from sales taxes) by meeting with legislators at the Kansas Statehouse and on the Hill in Washington DC.
4. Advocacy is an opportunity for CPAs to make meaningful impact. In speaking with the 2019-2020 class of KSCPA’s leadership program, Damon Ward, CPA, Chair of the KSCPA described advocacy involvement as a way to “lean on the experience and insights you’ve gathered over the years and give back by putting that knowledge to use to either further a legislators’ understanding on a topic, further the state economy, or help formulate law. Very few people have a chance to do that directly and that can be done through advocacy.” Jay Langley, CPA, KSCPA Board member and Advocate Task Force member shared that “as you get involved, you get to see how our state is run, how something becomes law and what legislators are doing in Topeka.”
KSCPA Goal: To be aware of pending legislation that affects the profession and to be prepared to discuss the impact and respond if necessary.
CPAs and aspiring CPAs, I invite you to show your love for our profession and get involved in our advocacy efforts. If you would like to help us, simply comment “YES” to this blog post. Your expertise can help us give practical insights and considerations on proposals, help draft informational testimony and even present informational briefings to legislators if you are up for the challenge.
“Say yes to the KSCPA, you’ll work out the details later.”
-Jay Langley, CPA-
The Ignite blog is an official publication of the Kansas Society of CPAs, Copyright 2020.