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but are unable to utilize the member
discount when doing so. Approxi-
mately a decade ago, to bring addi-
tional value to the firms, the CTCPA
implemented a program known as the
"CPE Subscriber" program. For an an-
nual flat fee, an individual would be
able to purchase CTCPA CPE at the
member rate for one year. This work-
around currently benefits 50 to 100
individuals and, consequently, their
firms annually.
Eight CTCPA committees, including
the Financial Institutions Committee,
the Employee Benefit Plans Interest
Group, and the State Taxation Com-
mittee, currently include nonmembers.
The experience and insight that these
individuals working in their respective
niches bring to committee meetings
are invaluable to the groups' discus-
sions and planning.
According to the current bylaws,
Pledges are only eligible to retain
Pledge status for five years after re-
ceiving a bachelor's degree. In theory,
over the course of those five years, an
individual could earn the additional
30 credits and experience and pass
the CPA Exam, thereby becoming a
full-fledged member of the society.
For a variety of reasons, however, the
certification process can take longer
than five years. At a time when these
new professionals can greatly benefit
from CTCPA affiliation for exam review
course discounts, education, advice,
and more, they find themselves timing
out of the Pledge program and unable
to fit into any other category. With the
demographic shifts happening within
the profession, the CTCPA must be
able to fully support these new and
young professionals.
CTCPA has long understood the im-
portance of building strong relation-
ships with the educators who help train
the next generation of CPAs. Through
conferences and professional develop-
ment seminars, CTCPA has sought to
provide a forum for educators, many of
whom are not CPAs and are therefore
currently not eligible to join the society,
to network with each other as well as
meet with practicing CPAs to keep up-
to-date with industry trends and hiring
managers' needs.
Allowing these professionals to fully
and legitimately associate with the
CTCPA would strengthen the member-
ship as a network, a knowledge base,
and a unified voice on advocacy issues.
Currently, 34 other state CPA societies
around the country allow non-CPAs to
join in some capacity including New
York and Massachusetts.
This proposal was put forth by the
CTCPA Bylaws Committee and ac-
cepted and endorsed unanimous-
ly by the Board of Directors and
the 25-member Advisory Council.
Not one member of these three groups
dissented in these votes.
Cons
Some CTCPA members may perceive
the society as an exclusive fraternity
"for CPAs only," and lament the loss of
that status.
State law also prohibits non-certified
individuals from representing them-
selves as CPAs. However, allowing
non-certified individuals to refer to
themselves as "members of the Con-
necticut Society of CPAs" could po-
tentially create confusion among the
public as to whether the individual is
a CPA. The onus would be upon the
Associate Member, who must adhere
to state law and the CTCPA bylaws
and Code of Professional Conduct,
to make certain not to create any im-
pression that he or she is certified,
and to clarify the situation should
such an inference be made.
u
Connecticut CPA
g
September/October 2012
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