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OFOS Closing Information

Importance of Periodic Closings and General Ledger Maintenance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monthly Closing Calendar

In order to produce accurate and reliable financial information for any reporting period during a year (e.g. month, quarter, year), the Office of Financial Operations and Systems (OFOS) requires all District agencies to review transactions on a monthly basis to ensure that they are accurate, complete, and timely posted to the general ledger.  Monthly closings (routine review, analysis, and “clean-up” of general ledger accounts) provide for a more efficient annual close process with fewer required audit adjustments. 

Prior to the month-end closing process, agencies must be made aware of the last date on which transactions (journal entries) may be entered into the financial system for the month.  A Monthly Closing Calendar is made available to all accounting /financial staff to ensure that they are fully aware of the required deadlines.  Typically, the last day on which agencies may post entries in the financial system for a given month is the eighth business day following the end of a month.

For example, see the Monthly Closing Calendar [PDF] for fiscal year 2012.


Interim Closing

Much like the monthly closings, each interim closing provides an opportunity for the District to closely analyze and adjust as necessary the general ledger accounts before year-end.  Typically, the District conducts two interim closes each fiscal year—one for the period ending March 31 and another for the period ending June 30. 

In preparation for each interim closing, the Office of Financial Operations and Systems (OFOS) reviews the general ledger for the current year and reflects on past interim closings to determine the areas  of financial operations (general ledger accounts) which may require closer scrutiny and examination.  OFOS then develops specific interim closing instructions for distribution to agencies.  These instructions are made available to agency financial managers and their respective staffs via the OCFO’s Intranet site.  Agency personnel may also seek additional guidance on interim closing requirements by directly contacting OFOS staff.

Annual Closing

One of the primary functions of the Office of Financial Operations and Systems (OFOS) is to produce a timely and accurate Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR).  To accomplish this task successfully, it is important that the District examine its general ledger (“book of financial records”) at year-end, which includes reconciling, analyzing, and adjusting accounts as needed to ensure accuracy, completeness, and reliability of financial data, on which the CAFR will be based.  Such annual “cleanup” of the general ledger is needed to ensure the District’s audit readiness, and its ability to prepare financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), thereby laying the foundation for obtaining unqualified (clean) audit opinions from the independent auditors. 

OFOS prepares a Manual of Annual Closing Instructions each year and makes the manual available to agency financial managers and their respective staffs via the OCFO’s Intranet site. The manual includes specific annual closing instructions for each topical area.  Historically, Annual Closing Topics have included the following:

  • Topic 1:    Payroll Default
  • Topic 2:    Self-Balancing Accounts
  • Topic 3:    Cash and Investment Accounts
  • Topic 4:    Imprest Funds
  • Topic 5:    Current Liabilities
  • Topic 6:    Intradistrict Transactions
  • Topic 7:    Inventory and Prepaid Expense
  • Topic 8:    Capital Assets
  • Topic 9:    Construction in Progress
  • Topic 10:  General Revenues and Receivables
  • Topic 11:  Commitments and Contingencies
  • Topic 12:  Reimbursable Revenues and Receivables
  • Topic 13:  Miscellaneous Trust and Agency Funds
  • Topic 14:  Component Units Including Enterprise and Certain Trust Funds
  • Topic 15:  Other Information and Requirements
  • Topic 16:  Federal Payments

In addition to the Annual Closing Instructions, OFOS makes other relevant information available to agencies (also via the OCFO Intranet site) that will be useful in successfully completing the annual close requirements.  Such information includes:

  • An Annual Close Memorandum, which is used to formally transmit the closing instructions to agencies and highlights any changes or new requirements added to the closing instructions
  • A copy of the District’s Comprehensive Financial Management Policy
  • A Calendar of Submission Deadlines for Closing Packages
  • A copy of the Monthly Closing Calendar for the fiscal year being closed
  • Listings of Certain Comptroller GL Account Codes (Current Liabilities)
  • Required Closing Forms to be completed for each topic
  • Other supporting schedules/worksheets as deemed to be necessary

To ensure that agencies have the necessary knowledge and information to accurately and efficiently complete the annual close requirements, OFOS also holds annual closing workshops that are designed as “refresher courses” for financial managers and staff but are detailed enough to sufficiently train staff members who may be new to the District’s annual closing process.  OFOS reviews past annual closing experience and issues (concerns) noted throughout the most recent fiscal year to identify topics to be covered during the workshops.  After identifying the “problem areas” or topics to be highlighted, OFOS develops a workshop schedule, and distributes it to agency financial staff.  A sample Annual Closing Workshop Schedule is shown below:
 

Annual Closing Workshops Schedule
Date Time Place Subject
Tuesday, October 4 10:00 am until 12:00 pm OFOS, 1100 4th St., SW 8th Floor
Training Room E850
Workshop 1: District Government Accounting Basics
Wednesday,  October 5 10:00 am until 12:30 pm OFOS, 1100 4th St., SW 8th Floor
Training Room E850

Workshop 2: Obligations and Liabilities
 
Wednesday, October 5 1:00 pm until 4:00 pm OFOS, 1100 4th St., SW 8th Floor
Training Room E850

Workshop 3: Intra District Processing

Wednesday, October 12 9:00 am until  12:00 pm OFOS, 1100 4th St., SW 8th Floor
Training Room E850

Workshop 4: Revenues


 
Wednesday, October 12 1:30 pm until 3:30 pm OFOS, 1100 4th St., SW 8th Floor
Training Room E850


Workshop 5: Capital assets and CIP
 

Agency financial staff members are also encouraged to contact OFOS as needed to inquire about closing requirements or other related matters during the annual closing period which typically spans from early October to late November each year.  The District’s CAFR is issued on or before January 31 of the subsequent calendar year following the close of the immediately preceding fiscal year.