Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf recently signed into law Act 4 of 2019 (HB 264), which amends section 12 of the Municipality Authorities Act, 53 Pa.C.S. 5612, to establish minimum standards for an Authority’s financial and operating procedures. Act 4 received unanimous support in both the House and the Senate.
Act 4 makes a number of noteworthy changes to Section 12 of the Authorities Act. A brief summary of those changes follows:
- Mandates the use of generally accepted accounting principles in the establishment of billing and collection procedures;
- Prohibits the acceptance of payments in the name of an individual on behalf of the Authority;
- Requires that an Authority’s annual financial report be submitted on a form prepared by the Department of Community and Economic Development, as well as the Authority’s incorporating municipality and any other municipality has has residents served by the Authority;
- Extends the deadline to file the annual financial report to 180 days from the end of the fiscal year, from the previous 90 days; and
- Requires that the Authority’s annual report and audit be discussed at a public meeting and formally accepted by a vote of the Authority board.
Act 4 establishes minimum standards; nothing prevents an Authority from approving more stringent standards in its financial procedures.
Most of Act 4’s changes go into effect immediately; the changes to the annual reporting procedures go into effect 180 days after passage.