AMG LAUNCHES NEW CHANNELNew York - The Accountants Media Group, publishers of Accounting Today, Practical Accountant and Accounting Technology, has launched a new channel on its Web site, WebCPA.com, that will address issues and topics related to the multiple generations now co-existing in accounting firms.

Found at www.accountingtomorrow.com, the site will offer perspectives on green initiatives, diversity, Generation Yers and Baby Boomers, work-life balance and a various other topics that are evolving in the accounting profession. These issues are not just about the younger generation - they involve everyone. Accounting Tomorrow will include profiles and interviews of "hot shots" from all generations, newsworthy information updated daily on a blog, and columns written from the trenches full of trends and insight.

For more information, or if you have ideas and want to become involved, send Alexandra DeFelice, senior editor of Accounting Technology, and Liz Gold, associate editor of Accounting Today, an e-mail at tomorrow@sourcemedia.com.

GAO: TARP NEEDS BETTER MANAGEMENT

Washington D.C. - The Treasury Department's Troubled Asset Relief Program needs to do a better job of ensuring integrity, accountability and transparency, according to a report from the Government Accountability Office.

The GAO has been tasked with reporting every 60 days on the progress of the program, which was established by the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act in early October. The GAO said that it was too soon to determine whether it is having the intended effect on the credit and financial markets.

The report mainly addresses the activities that have been undertaken through TARP as of Nov. 25; the structure of the Treasury's Office of Financial Stability and its system of internal controls; and preliminary indicators of TARP's performance, including trends in interest rate spreads, mortgage rates, mortgage originations and foreclosures.

The GAO said that it recognized that TARP had existed for less than 60 days and that it faces many challenges. "However, Treasury has yet to address a number of critical issues, including determining how it will ensure that [the Capital Purchase Program] is achieving its intended goals and monitoring compliance with limitations on executive compensation and dividend payments," said the report.

To help ensure the program's integrity, accountability and transparency, the GAO recommended that the Treasury work with banking regulators to establish a systematic means of determining and reporting whether financial institutions' activities are generally consistent with the purposes of the Capital Purchase Program and help ensure an appropriate level of accountability and transparency.

IRS NOT PREPARED FOR DISASTERS

Washington, D.C. - Two new reports by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration faulted the emergency preparedness of the Internal Revenue Service.

"Plans used by the IRS to respond to emergencies were not always complete or subject to regular exercises or tests to ensure readiness," said one report. "As a result, TIGTA believes that in the event of an actual emergency such as a terrorist attack or natural disaster, these deficiencies could result in delays in safeguarding employees and visitors and in beginning efforts to recover critical business processes such as collecting tax revenue, processing tax refunds and responding to taxpayer inquiries."

The second report from TIGTA criticized the IRS's ability to recover, restore and resume normal business operations after a disaster or an emergency.

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