A House bill that will amend some key operating procedures for the South Carolina Board of Accountancy was approved 106-0 on its second reading on Wednesday, April 3.

H.3785 (sponsored by Sandifer, Howard, Thayer, West and Weeks) is expected to advance to the Senate on Thursday after its third House reading.

UPDATE: The bill received third reading Thursday and was then read the first time in the Senate and referred to the Committee on Labor, Commerce and Industry.

Of particular note is revised criteria for reciprocity. It expands application eligibility to those who hold a valid out-of-state CPA license issued before Jan. 1, 2012 and has engaged in four years of out-of-state professional practice as a CPA within the 10 years immediately preceding the South Carolina application.

Also among the Board of Accountancy bill’s amendments:

  • Disciplinary hearings by the Board must be open to the public, except in certain circumstances
  • Allows that BOA meetings may be closed in instances relating to federal law
  • Relating to the confidential treatment of evidence obtained during Board investigations, it provides that all proceedings and inquiries related to investigations are confidential except as otherwise provided
  • Aligns the definition of Compilations with SSARS to read as follows:

“’Compilation’ means providing a service to be performed in accordance with Statements on Standards for Accounting and Review Services (SSARS) in which the objective of the accountant is to apply accounting and financial reporting expertise to assist management in the presentation of financial statements and reports in accordance with this section without undertaking to obtain or provide any assurance that there are no material modifications that should be made to the financial statements in order for them to be in accordance with the applicable financial reporting framework.”

  • Removes unnecessary reference to the future of computer-based exams
  • Disclaimers that accounting practitioners and firms must use when associating their names with certain compiled financial statements must comply with certain national standards
  • Noncertified public accountant owners must complete the same number of hours of continuing professional education as licensed CPAs. In each three-year period, as established by the board, six of the hours must be in ethics, and at least two of these hours must be a board-approved South Carolina Accountancy Rules and Regulations course.”

You can track the progress of H.3785 here and read the bill and its revisions here.