From the Executive Editor

By Norman Levinrad • February 17, 2016 • 0 Comments
This has been a challenging month for me so far. My dad died on Feb. 3, so as you can imagine I’ve been dealing with a lot of stuff since then,  taking care of his affairs and helping my mom. My dad was 86 when he died. He was an accountant and tax preparer, and the main thing that his life always represented to me was commitment. He always demonstrated serious commitment to his family, his profession, his responsibilities and his work, and in fact he worked full-time until just a few months ago! So I decided that the best way to honor my dad was to continue to meet my commitments, and a February ACOPA Monthly edition is one of those. In fairness, my job this month was made really easy by the plethora of content that I received.
We got a lot of new guidance from the IRS in the last few weeks, which is like manna from heaven for a pension newsletter editor! Some of it was good for us, like them finally coming to their senses on mid-year safe-harbor amendments. Some of it is not so good, like the proposed changes to the 401(a)(4) regulations. I have to be honest that the cynical side of me says, “Awesome, this will generate lots of consulting work for all of us!” We’ll see how it all lands after the IRS receives all of the anticipated comments, but certainly we can see which way the wind is blowing. Our Executive Director Judy Miller writes about these proposed changes here
A trend I’ve been seeing over the last few years is CPAs issuing W-2s for partners who get K-1s. Since this is a very timely issue for us as we work on partnership December 2015 calculations, I asked Kevin Donovan, who is both an actuary and CPA, to write an article for us detailing the issues that this raises. Kevin’s excellent article is here
The Los Angeles Advanced Pension Conference was held in January. I enjoyed attending the conference and attended a few interesting sessions. Angie Barclay was one of the attendees and made the mistake of saying hi to me, because I asked her to write about the conference from her perspective. That will teach her! Angie’s recap is here
A few weeks ago Karen Smith posted a question on the ACOPA listserv about using different crediting rates for different groups of participants in a cash calance plan. I asked Karen if she’d write an article for us about this, and Karen said that Larry Deutsch had helped her understand all the issues, so they collaborated on a question/answer article about this, here. I know I learned a few things reading over their article! 
This year marks ASPPA’s 50th anniversary. Alan Stone has written an article about the history of ASPPA and about some of the festivities planned for this year’s Annual Conference to celebrate. Alan’s article is here
Lastly for this edition, Karen Smith, our esteemed President, gives us her usual update about what our Leadership Council is up to, here
See you all again in March. Hope we all stay sane during the crazy time!