Scottsdale, Ariz. (May 26, 2004) - The 240 members of the ruling Council of the American Institute of CPAs approved four recommendations made by a task force on the role and responsibilities of Council, and defeated four others at their meeting here.

The task force, appointed in February 2003, issued 14 recommendations in its report to Council last October. In addition to the eight recommendations being considered this week, the Board of Directors accepted responsibility for implementing the remaining six resolutions, and a resolution passed yesterday by Council supported them as well.

One of the approved resolutions requires Council to adopt a statement of responsibilities that all Council members must sign. A second resolution requires that after Council has acted on issue, Council members are obligated to present the position of Council, as well as pros and cons. Members may also express their own views on the matter.

The third measure urges state societies to actively solicit nominations to Council from their membership and requires approval either by the society's board or by a member election. The final resolution requires that all Council meetings, including regional meetings, have an open forum where non-Council AICPA members can participate. While the Spring and Fall meeting already include open forums, the regional Council meetings, which are closed, do not.

Council members also passed a motion offered by Montana that defeated three task force recommendations that would have changed the term lengths for designated, elected and at-large Council members. Lastly, Council members defeated a recommendation that would have mandated that Council members forfeit their seat had they missed three consecutive Council meetings, including regional meetings. Currently attendance is required at three consecutive meetings, but that doesn't include regional meetings.

Had Council approved any of the four measures it defeated, a vote by the full membership would have been required to change the bylaws, which would have cost about $300,000.

-- Melissa Klein Aguilar

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