Changes sought for CPA exam

Students nearing the completion of an accounting degree would have more time to take the certified public accountant exam under a bill discussed Jan. 21 in a Banking, Commerce and Insurance Committee hearing.

<a href='http://news.legislature.ne.gov/dist48' target='_blank' title='Link to the website of Sen. John Stinner'>Sen. John Stinner</a>
Sen. John Stinner

Currently, individuals who are within 60 days of completing their accounting degree can sit for the CPA exam. LB782, introduced by Sen. John Stinner of Gering, would increase that limit to 120 days.

“It is my intent to prevent students from leaving the state to take the CPA exam,” Stinner said. “I believe LB782 will add one more piece to the incentive package to keep (graduates) in state in the accounting sector.”

Shari Munro of the Nebraska Society of Certified Public Accountants testified in support of the bill, saying it would “provide greater convenience” and better enable students to take the exam in Nebraska.

Also in support was Tom Purcell of the Nebraska Board of Public Accountancy. Purcell, also a professor of accounting at Creighton University, said current law needlessly restricts when students can sit for the CPA exam, sometimes causing them to wait until after graduation.

“In my experience with students over the last 40 years is that they are in a much better position to pass the exam as soon as they finish their academic preparation,” Purcell said. “This will really help those students accelerate their success.”

No one spoke in opposition to the bill and the committee took no immediate action on it.

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