The XBRL US State & Local Government Working Group submitted a comment letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Investor Advisory Committee recommending the use of standards to resolve issues in analyzing financials of state and local government. The letter notes:
“Today, tens of thousands of municipalities prepare financial data in unstructured, inconsistent reports resulting in time delays, the inability to easily aggregate data, and difficulties comparing local governments. The lack of automation means inefficient, manual processing, which increases the cost of investment, harming investors and the municipalities themselves.
Bringing financial data standards into municipal reporting would resolve these issues and empower investors to more easily assess the credit risk of municipal bonds. The purpose of this letter is to ask the SEC Investor Advisory Committee for its support for an initiative to build these standards…we urge the Committee to ask MSRB (Municipal Securities Research Board) to permit iXBRL CAFR (Comprehensive Annual Financial Report) filings in lieu of, or in addition to PDFs, and to implement the SEC’s Inline XBRL Viewer on EMMA (Electronic Municipal Market Access System). “