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Danzo

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Posts posted by Danzo

  1. we are in oregon and we are meeting two hours in person,

    Mask usage pretty strictly enforced for the two hour meetings, the youth activities, not so much and the smaller meetings (ward counsel, missionary coordination, etc) not as much.

    Interestingly enough, the last sacrament meeting, there was one person who wasn't wearing a mask who was the oldest person in attendenc (90 years old, I think)  No one kicked him out. 

     

  2. 1 hour ago, Danzo said:

    Of course they are different than for profits.  In fact they are not even called P&Ls

    Here is an example for the american red cross a non profit

    https://www.redcross.org/content/dam/redcross/about-us/publications/2019-publications/2019_AmericanRedCross_Financial_Statements.pdf

    You wont find the term "Profit" at all on any of the Consolidate statement  You come up with a "Profit" if you want to compare changes in net fund balances.

    Compare with general motors, a for profit company

    https://www.annualreports.com/HostedData/AnnualReports/PDF/NYSE_GM_2019.pdf   (page 50)

     

    My point is that non-profits account for things differently than for-profits.

    Do you agree?

     

     

  3. Just so we are speaking accurately here, Currently the church and churches are not required to pay income Tax on their exempt purpose revenues.

    They are required to pay

    1.     payroll taxes

    2.    UBIT (unrelated buisness income tax) on unrelated business income

    Some property and purchase may be subject to sales tax and property taxes  (It depends on the jurisdiction and the particular sales and property involved)

     

    I am sure the church pays out a lot of payroll taxes.

    I have had to deal with clients who are not profit organization and churches who have owed quite a bit on payroll taxes to the IRS.  In fact, a payroll tax audit is usually where they end up getting in trouble with the IRS and state taxing authorities. 

     

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  4. 6 hours ago, Teancum said:

    How may audited financial statements for NFPs have you looked at.  I can assure you they use P&Ls.  They are different than a for profit but they still use one.

    Of course they are different than for profits.  In fact they are not even called P&Ls

    Here is an example for the american red cross a non profit

    https://www.redcross.org/content/dam/redcross/about-us/publications/2019-publications/2019_AmericanRedCross_Financial_Statements.pdf

    You wont find the term "Profit" at all on any of the Consolidate statement  You come up with a "Profit" if you want to compare changes in net fund balances.

    Compare with general motors, a for profit company

    https://www.annualreports.com/HostedData/AnnualReports/PDF/NYSE_GM_2019.pdf   (page 50)

     

    My point is that non profits account for things differently that for profits.

    Do you agree?

     

  5. 5 hours ago, Teancum said:

    GAAP is the staring point for determining taxable income.  Then, based on various tax law, book to tax adjustments are made.  Some of the adjustments have basis in reasonable differences such as deduction for reserves for say future costs on service warranties a company may be obliged to make, or a reserve for a legal settlement yet to be determined.  Tax law does not allow a deduction until such items are paid. Other adjustments are just because tax law says so.  Like penalties or  entertainment costs both of which are limited under tax law just because the law was passed that says so. I do not know of anytime tax courts had said GAAP in general is not acceptable for tax purposes.

    Although I don't have time to completely review all tax law cases, we can at least start with the supreme court decision in

    Thor Power Tool v. Commissioner, 439 U.S. 522 (1979)

    "There is no presumption that an inventory practice conformable to "generally accepted accounting principles" is valid for tax purposes. Such a presumption is insupportable m light of the statute, this Court's past decisions, and the differing objectives of tax and financial accounting."

    You are right, that GAAP can be used as a starting point, but the tax code often requires deviation.

    I am sure you are familiar with the M-1 Reconciliation for corporate and Partnership tax returns.

    A full treatment of the subject may be beyond the ability of this forum.

  6. The way I see it is when the church says no tithing funds were used for project X

    1.   The church is telling the truth.   The only way that would be possible is if the church uses a funds based accounting system

    2.  The church is lying.       The only way they could be lying is if they used a funds based accounting system and they knew that tithing funds were used for the project.

    3.  The church doesn't use a funds based accounting system.  Then the church really has no idea whether the funds come from tithing or they found the money on the street one day.  They just say stuff like this because it sounds good.

     

  7. 12 minutes ago, ttribe said:

    I'm not really interested in arguing the esoteric elements of accounting with you.  My comment was along these lines - if you are required to submit financial statements under grant and/or statutory guidelines, then you should be using applicable GASB and/or Yellowbook accounting principles as well as a fund accounting system.  If you are an SEC registrant, on the other hand, you should be using GAAP and an accounting system which at least facilitates such reporting.  Whether you THINK such decisions SHOULD be made based on the general needs of the organization, and what actually happens in the practical world, are often two very different things.  I was silent on the cost accounting needs because that's not really what this case is about.

    I am well aware of what happens in the practical world.  In the past, I  have made a lot of money designing custom software with custom accounting systems to fit the needs of the organization that are not the same accounting methods that are used by GAAP or Tax or even other software systems.  While these methods are required for reporting to the public and various outside agencies they are often less than useful for managing the organizations day to day needs.  Hence the need for customization.  While I am no longer in the the software business, I still make quite a bit of money consulting with businesses on their accounting sytems.  For non profits, I often counsel them that a funds based accounting method is useful for an orgainization that has many different missions.  Funds based accounting has other uses than just keeping track of restricted funds and grants.

    In the context of this discussion, I believe the church uses funds based accounting to keep track of their internal accounting needs, not because government reporting requires it, but because it is the most useful method to manage the organization.  

    • Like 1
  8. 2 hours ago, ttribe said:

    Generally speaking, no. The decision on the application of accounting systems and standards is driven by reporting requirements. If there is no requirement for fund accounting, then setting it up that way would be unnecessary and likely somewhat more expensive to maintain. 

    The reporting requirements should be set by the needs of the organization.  These financial statements are then manipulated for reporting to various outside parties (government). It should never be the reverse.

    After as has been stated in many a tax court case GAAP is not an acceptable method of accounting for tax.    That doesn't mean GAAP should not be used, it just means the GAAP reports need to be manipulated for tax purposes.  Even GAAP is often a manipulation of accounting systems that are non GAAP but much more useful to the organization's internal needs.

     

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  9. 1 minute ago, ttribe said:

    BYU has its own financial reporting and audits.  As far as I know it isn't rolled up into anything for the church.  As to your other comments, I'll just respectfully disagree with your characterizations of the ability to comment on the use(s) of certain funds and the necessity for a fund accounting system to support that.  The church had already stated on its tithing slips that just because you put money on a certain like, it doesn't mean it actually goes there.  

    As to the 990, these are likely being filed for numerous church owned entities individually. Ensign Peak, for example, as an investment arm would be extremely unlikely to use fund accounting. 

    We will have to just agree to disagree.

    If the church didn't use a funds based accounting system, the church couldn't even know  whether tithing funds were used for one project or another, much less lie about it. 

    The statement as it currently reads "Though reasonable efforts will be made to use donations as designated, all donations become the Church's property and will be used at the Church's sole discretion to further the Church's overall mission."  Woudl not make any sense if they were not trying to segregate income by funds. No reasonable efforts could be made if there weren't an account system in place to measure that.

     

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  10. 2 hours ago, Analytics said:

    The issue is whether the Church was sufficiently honest with the membership about what it does with tithing money. Fund-based accounting really doesn't solve the issue.

    If the Church uses fund-based accounting, then every year it gives each of its major programs a budget--$1.5 billion goes to BYU, $1.2 billion goes to buildings, $800 million goes to the missionary efforts, etc. 

    If the Church puts, say, $1 billion of tithing money into a slush fund every year, is it 100% honest for it to say, "We didn't use any tithing money to bail out the mall and the insurance company. We used money from the slush fund!"

    IF the Church uses a funds based accounting system to segregate funds by income source, then It can say whether or not tithing funds were used for a specific project.

    Its used all of the time and is a normal form of accounting in non profits and government organization.  People get in trouble all the time in government for using money from the wrong source for the wrong project. 

    We just had a scandal in one of the small towns in our area when the local government tried to use sewer funds (income from a sewer fee) for roads. 

    These accountings systems are taken seriously.

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  11. 15 hours ago, ttribe said:

    Actually, the more I think about it, the less likely it seems to me that they would be using fund accounting.  Fund accounting is typically only used when there are statutory or contractual (e.g. grants) restrictions. Otherwise, a non-profit that simply receives donations just issues a typical Balance Sheet and P&L with a slightly different "equity" roll-forward.  Yeah, I audited a few of those back in the day, too.

    Although many organizations cheat and us a simple p&L and balance sheat (especially the small ones)  because they don't really know what they are doing, it really isn't appropriate for a non profit to use the P&L format for their financials.  The 990 is really not built around a P&L format.  You really have to manipulate the books to make it fit.

    The reason why the I belive the church uses funds based accounting is that almost every thing that I have seen in the church revolves around "funds".  Tithing funds, Fast offering Funds, Humanitarian Funds, Building Funds, Mission Funds, Book of mormon Funds, Scout funds, Young womans funds Ect.   

    When the church says no tithing funds were used for a particular endevor, the only way they could even pretend to say it is if the church used funds based accounting to segregate the funds from various sources of income. If they didn't use a funds based accounting, such statements would be meaningless.  When they say fast offering funds are used to help the needy, it would be a meaningless statement unless the church segregated the funds.  When it mentions a missionary fund, it would be meaningless unless a funds based accounting system were used. the same with humanitary funds.   BYU probably recieves Restricted Funds donations (for support of one program or other) on a very regular basis.

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  12. 5 minutes ago, ttribe said:

    If they use fund accounting, that would at least provide a starting point for analysis of expenditures by program.  It would also be a starting point for tracing back to the source of funds in terms of bank accounts, etc.  It is not a panacea to the controversy, however.

    I can't see how they wouldn't use a funds based accounting. Its pretty much the standard for non profits of that size.

  13. 5 hours ago, The Nehor said:

    He is not wrong.

    When you pay your electric bill did that money come from your wages? Your income tax refund? The money you pulled out of your portfolio? Was it from your current job or the job before it? Money is fungible and one dollar is the same as another so once you throw them into the pot it doesn’t much matter where it came from.

    Now you can (and to an extent the church does) earmark some money to specific purposes. The money that goes into Fast Offerings goes into the same account with tithing and the Ward Mission Fund but the ward tracks how much they ‘own’ and the balances come out right.

    The danger is best represented by a lot of state lotteries that champion that all the money made goes to schools or veterans or whatever. While technically true the question is to ask whether that means the schools and veterans get more money because you play the lottery or do they get a fixed amount that just happens to be equal to or greater than what the lottery brings in? Spoilers: It is the latter and you playing the lottery doesn’t help kids or veterans.

    I personally suspect the Church has a good idea of the proportion of the various funds in investments that come into their care and that their statement about the money coming from businesses is correct but whether the church is innocent or not (and I suspect they are honest here) these kinds of claims are inherently dubious because of the nature of how money works. When something looks like a slush fund it is normal to look at it carefully.

    I don't think you have much of an idea of funds based accounting.  In funds based accounting (the accounting used by governments and non profits)  money is not fungible.  The government can't used the street maintainence funds to pay for the library.  The funds are segregated and restricted to specific uses, based on their source. 

    Gas tax can only be used for highway improvements, for example.  

    Most non profits use a funds based accounting system, rather than a profit and loss based accounting system.

     

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  14. 6 hours ago, Analytics said:

    Accountants don't talk this way. They consider money to be "fungible." Maybe there is a solid accounting basis behind what they are claiming here (e.g. that the money that was distributed from Ensign Peaks was less than the inception-to-date investment income), but the claim is so vague it's impossible to know what they mean.

    have you ever heard of funds based accounting?

  15. 8 minutes ago, Danzo said:

    In our stake, I am involvved to revive a Spanish Branch that was discontinued a few years ago.  Many of the hispanics want this to happen,  However, there are also many Hispanics that do not want to attend a spanish branch even though they don't speak english very well.   was talking to one of the families that mildly resent the pressure to go to the unit that is being set up for them. They feel much more confortable in their current ward.  Other wan't a spanish branch because they don't feel they fit in with their current ward

    Both those who want to attend a spanish unit and those that do not have very good and valid reasons.  

    It seems grouping by skin color, native language spoken and heritage are not good substitutes for getting to know people on an individual level

     

  16. 9 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

    There’s a balance. Due to the racial and historical hierarchy that still exists in the US, there is still common experience, concerns, and interests with a lot of minority folk. I feel more at home in a ward that speaks a language I’m still not perfect in than I do with our very white LDS (and Utahn influenced) stake presidencies are talking to us. My experiences from them are very different in many ways, but there is also commonality in our experiences with the dominant society. 
     

    I’ve seen that balance tip quite often the other problematic direction by those who use voices from minority communities that best fit their own political or sociological perspectives. Even when those voices are non-representative of the larger community. They’ll point to them an inadvertently end up minimizing and giving license to ignore the more supported, but less comfortable for them, opinion of the majority of the communities in question. 

    With luv, 

    BD

     

    In our stake, I am involvved to revive a Spanish Branch that was discontinued a few years ago.  Many of the hispanics want this to happen,  However, there are also many Hispanics that do not want to attend a spanish branch even though they don't speak english very well.   was talking to one of the families that mildly resent the pressure to go to the unit that is being set up for them. They feel much more confortable in their current ward.  Other wan't a spanish branch because they don't feel they fit in with their current ward

    Both those who want to attend a spanish unit and those that do not have very good and valid reasons.  

    It seems grouping, skin color, native language spoken and heritage are not good substitutes for getting to know people on an individual level

  17. 12 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

    That might be the important part here. Myself and many that I also know definitely do not feel that way. 
     

    with luv, 

    BD 

    This obvious difference in the views of the different groups we associate with should underscore the danger of assuming that people can be artificially lumped together into categories of political convenience.  Trying to lump all non white people into one group shows a high degree of cultural insensitivity. 

  18. 9 hours ago, Calm said:

    Are you suggesting there is only one culture or what?

    I believe the term "BIPOC" seems to reflect there only being two options, "White", and "Other than White"  I believe there are many cultures and experiences and that using the term "BIPOC" is an attempt to be lazy and group everyone into one culture that doesn't meet the definition of "White".  It is kind of insulting to many of them  (At least that is what I get from talking to the "BIPOC" people I associate with.

     

    • Upvote 1
  19. FYI 

    My  two children (whom most people here would call BIPOC)  just  applied for BYU provo  and were rejected so obvously BYU Provo is racist.

     

    The good news is they were both accepted by BYU Idaho, so BYU Idaho isn't racist. 

    • Haha 2
  20. 8 hours ago, AtlanticMike said:

    I just asked one of the black guys on my crew if he knows what a BIPOC is and he said he thought it was a high end Mercedes Benz 🤣🤣🤣🤣. I told him no, that was a maybach, and then I told him what BIPOC stood for and he said he would punch the person that called him that. He's a cool dude but you don't want to get on his bad side.

    In my and (others I Know,) bipoc is just a bigoted term to try and creat a false duality among cultures.  Its a way making sure people know what side they are on.

  21. 6 hours ago, pogi said:

    That's why I commented about there being no "definition of what it means to die" from any disease.  Your comment made it sound like Covid cases are much more difficult to classify because there is no definition for Covid deaths, so the ambiguous nature of it may cause doctors and examiners to falsely attribute other deaths to Covid.  I was just clarifying that it is just as straightforward as classifying death for any other disease. 

    I am not accusing anyone of falsely attributing deaths to Covid.  What I have learned is that the numbers reported as COVID death aren't Death from COVID Necessarily but death with COVID.   I just noticed that our local paper just started changing the title of their headlines to reflect this.  Of the deaths with COIVID, according to my doctor friend, the connection of the death with covid can be strong (death from respiratory failure, from pneamonia caused by an ongoing COVID Infection), Not as strong (Cardiac arest while having an active COVID infection of someone who already had congestave heart failure),  Weaker still (Had covid several months ago, recovered, tested negative, then had a stroke), and really weak (fell off a ladder and broke neck, then tested positive).  He said there was one case that was contriversial in his area where the patient tested negative for COVID and still got classified as a COVID death.

    He said the first two examples he would classify as a COVID deaths, the third and fourth examples he wouldn't but he has seen others put them down as covid deaths.

    What I would like to something like a liert scale for the deaths with COVID to give more information on exactly how dangerous this virus is. 

    I don't think the current reporting gives enough information.  

    I am not trying doubt but to learn.   

    6 hours ago, pogi said:

    This is true, it is much more difficult for coroners and medical examiners, which makes them so much better at what they do than doctors.  They do a thorough investigation into the medical records of the person and interview family members/friends as to the condition around time of death.  Sometimes they will do an autopsy or take other tests.  I have no doubt that there may be some lazy (this is true in any profession) coroners who don't do a thorough investigation and misattribute deaths to Covid out there.  But I don't think it is right to suggest that the entire profession is corrupt or lazy, or not properly doing their jobs (which you weren't necessarily doing, but it may lead some to assume as much) because of your doctors friend's experience. 

    I don't want to suggest that the medical examiners are lazy in any way.  My doctor friend didn't imply it.  They are, however required to make their reports on COVID deaths rather quickly, perhaps before they can complete their investigations.  I think that is why he thinks that the medical examiners are more liberal with the covid number than the doctors. The need to report quickly combined with less information.

    Hopelfully after all of this is over we can get mored detailed information.  By that time, I fear only the academics amoung us will have access to the information. 

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  22. 37 minutes ago, rongo said:

    Where would the evidence come from, if true? Who would admit to it, if intentional, and who would readily see themselves and admit to inadvertently doing so, if unintentional? I think there is a lot of people conditioned to seeing the emperor with clothes with this. All of us know medical personnel, and it's interesting and useful to get their perspectives, but they are not monolithic, and there is a lot of outrage and "cancelling" going on with "renegade" people who buck the "party line" on this. I know medical personnel on both ends of the spectrum (DEFCON 1 <--- > higher than normal flu surges, but conditioning, psychosomatic elements, and agendas playing a role). I've been told that ICUs regularly operate in the upper 80% range in normal times, so 91% capacity is higher than normal, but not as much higher as it's being made out to be (this from an ICU nurse). According to her, many healthcare workers, conditioned by the media and political hysteria, see what they see at work through a conditioned lens, and this is exacerbated by many people who are in the hospital with severe flu symptoms being terrified by said media and political hysteria, with predictable psychosomatic results (terrified people become self-fulfilling prophecies, and the vicious cycle is fed in both directions). 

    In other words, I don't think evidence can really begin to be collected because I don't think people realize the amount of conditioning involved --- and no one wants to admit to others or to themselves that they may have subconsciously been less than scientifically objective about all of this, and that they may have unwittingly fed into it. I don't think it's a matter of rank-and-file healthcare workers rubbing their hands together in smoke-filled rooms and plotting to drive up Covid cases as much as possible for federal funding. I do think it subconsciously is a factor when there is a lot of defaulting and certain defaulting by people who are not going to be able to pay their hospital bills. Along with everything else involved with this psychologically, of course it's a factor. 

    I'll let everyone find their own sources (I like to use New York Times, Washington Post, CDC, Journal of the American Medical Association, etc. myself, so that people don't cry "fake news"), but ask yourself this: how does this year's flu season compare to reported Covid cases and deaths? How does this compare to the past three years? After you dig around, how do you explain that? We're being asked to believe that influenza magically is drastically down, but it's madness to suggest that there might be mislabeling going on?

    I understand that it is possible that people are taking advantage of the situation, but without evidence we should learn to be content with uncertainty and give people the benefit of the doubt, even if it means someone might get away with something. 

    The other alternative is to suspect every one of everything they might possibly do just because it's possible. 

    There have been many cases of people who have been punished for taking advantage of the system with evidence. Google Medicare fraud and you will find plenty of examples. 

    I prefer to wait for evidence before accusing people. 

    As for hospitals and doctors over prescribing treatment to make more money, I brought that up with my doctor friend. 

    He thinks that practicing what he calls "defensive medicine " is a problem. No one gets in trouble in the short term for being too cautious and ordering to many tests and treatments.  The fear is always not doing enough.  The problem has existed since well before the current pandemic. The medical community had plenty of opportunities to over prescribe before.  Google Medicare fraud and tou will find plenty of examples.

     

    • Upvote 1
  23. 30 minutes ago, rongo said:

    I don't think the incentive is for salary boosts; I think it's for aid and pay for services in a time when hospitals are getting stiffed by people unable to pay. There is certainly a hospital incentive to have a Covid diagnosis for someone hospitalized for pneumonia, because uninsured patients aren't going to be able to pay the hospital bill (in spades the longer or more complicated the hospitalization). It doesn't take any conspiracy theories to conceive of financial incentives vis a vis federal aid for Covid deaths as official cause of death. This has nothing to do with doctors being paid more; it has everything to do with helping the systems stay solvent in the face of what must be a high default rate. Even people with insurance can see their 20% after deductible being untenable. 

    While what you are saying may be plausible,  plausibility isn't evidence. We must have evidence before making accusations of falsifying diagnoses for monetary gain.

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