The following are the 19 notes to the principal financial statements:
FY 2018 Department of State Agency Financial Report: Notes to the Principal Financial Statements
Note 1. Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
Unless otherwise designated all use of a year indicates fiscal year, e.g., 2018 equals Fiscal Year 2018.
Reporting Entity and Basis of Consolidation
The accompanying principal financial statements present the financial activities and position of the Department of State. The Statements include all General, Special, Revolving, Trust, and Deposit funds established at the Department of the Treasury (Treasury) to account for the resources entrusted to Department management, or for which the Department acts as a fiscal agent or custodian (except fiduciary funds, see Note 19).
Included in the Department’s reporting entity is the U.S. Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC). Treaties in 1848, 1853, and 1970 established the boundary between the United States and Mexico that extends 1,954 miles, beginning at the Gulf of Mexico, following the Rio Grande a distance of 1,255 miles and eventually ending at the Pacific Ocean below California. Established in 1889, the IBWC has responsibility for applying the boundary and water treaties between the United States and Mexico and settling differences that may arise in their application. For further discussion on consolidated entities and disclosure entities in accordance with Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Standards (SFFAS) No. 47, Reporting Entity, see Note 2.
Basis of Presentation and Accounting
The statements are prepared as required by the Chief Financial Officers (CFO) Act of 1990, as amended by the Government Management Reform Act of 1994. They are presented in accordance with the form and content requirements of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-136, Financial Reporting Requirements, revised.
The statements have been prepared from the Department’s books and records, and are in accordance with the Department’s Accounting Policies (the significant policies are summarized in this Note). The Department’s Accounting Policies follow U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) for Federal entities, as prescribed by the Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board (FASAB). FASAB’s SFFAS No. 34, The Hierarchy of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, Including the Application of Standards Issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board, incorporates the GAAP hierarchy into FASAB’s authoritative literature.
Throughout the financial statements and notes, certain assets, liabilities, earned revenue, and costs have been classified as intragovernmental, which is defined as transactions made between two reporting entities within the Federal Government.
Transactions are recorded on both an accrual and budgetary basis. Under the accrual method of accounting, revenues are recognized when earned and expenses are recognized when incurred without regard to receipt or payment of cash. Budgetary accounting principles, on the other hand, are designed to facilitate compliance with legal requirements and controls over the use of Federal funds.
Revenues and Other Financing Sources
Department operations are financed through appropriations, reimbursement for the provision of goods or services to other Federal agencies, proceeds from the sale of property, certain consular-related and other fees, and donations. In addition, the Department collects passport, visa, and other consular fees that are not retained by the Department but are deposited directly to a Treasury account. The passport and visa fees are reported as earned revenues on the Statement of Net Cost and as non-entity collections in other financing sources on the Statement of Changes in Net Position.
Congress annually enacts one-year and multi-year appropriations that provide the Department with the authority to obligate funds within the respective fiscal years for necessary expenses to carry out mandated program activities. In addition, Congress enacts appropriations that are available until expended. All appropriations are subject to congressional restrictions and most appropriations are subject to OMB apportionment. For financial statement purposes, appropriations are recorded as a financing source (i.e., Appropriations Used) and reported on the Statement of Changes in Net Position at the time they are recognized as expenditures. Appropriations expended for capitalized property and equipment are recognized when the asset is purchased.
Work performed for other Federal agencies under reimbursable agreements is financed through the account providing the service and reimbursements are recognized as revenue when earned. Administrative support services at overseas posts are provided to other Federal agencies through the International Cooperative Administrative Support Services (ICASS). ICASS bills for the services it provides to agencies at overseas posts. These billings are recorded as revenue to ICASS and must cover overhead costs, operating expenses, and replacement costs for capital assets needed to carry on the operation. Proceeds from the sale of real property, vehicles, and other personal property are recognized as revenue when the proceeds are credited to the account that funded the asset. For non-capitalized property, the full amount realized is recognized as revenue. For capitalized property, revenue or loss is determined by whether the proceeds received were more or less than the net book value of the asset sold. The Department retains proceeds of sale, which are available for purchase of the same or similar category of property.
The Department is authorized to collect and retain certain user fees for machine-readable visas, expedited passport processing, and fingerprint checks on immigrant visa applicants. The Department is also authorized to credit the respective appropriations with (1) fees for the use of Blair House; (2) lease payments and transfers from the International Center Chancery Fees Held in Trust to the International Center Project; (3) registration fees for the Office of Defense Trade Controls; (4) reimbursement for international litigation expenses; and (5) reimbursement for training foreign government officials at the Foreign Service Institute.
Generally, donations received in the form of cash or financial instruments are recognized as revenue at their fair value in the period received. Contributions of services are recognized if the services received (1) create or enhance non-financial assets, or (2) require specialized skills that are provided by individuals possessing those skills, which would typically need to be purchased if not donated. Works of art, historical treasures, and similar assets that are added to collections are not recognized as revenue at the time of donation because they are heritage assets. If subsequently sold, proceeds from the sale of these items are recognized in the year of sale. More information on earned revenues can be found in Note 15.
Allocation transfers are legal delegations by one Federal agency of its authority to obligate budget authority and outlay funds to another agency. The Department processes allocation transfers with other Federal agencies as both a transferring (parent) agency of budget authority to a receiving (child) entity and as a receiving (child) agency of budget authority from a transferring (parent) entity. A separate fund account (allocation account) is created in the Treasury as a subset of the parent fund account for tracking and reporting purposes. Subsequent obligations and outlays incurred by the child agency are charged to this allocation account as they execute the delegated activity on behalf of the parent agency.
Generally, all financial activities related to allocation transfers (i.e., budget authority, obligations, outlays) are reported in the financial statements of the parent agency. Transfers from the Executive Office of the President, for which the Department is the receiving agency, is an exception to this rule. Per OMB guidance, the Department reports all activity relative to these allocation transfers in its financial statements. The Department allocates funds, as the parent, to the Departments of Defense, Labor (DOL), Treasury, Health and Human Services (HHS); the Peace Corps; Millennium Challenge Corporation; and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). In addition, the Department receives allocation transfers, as the child, from USAID.
Fund Balance with Treasury and Cash and Other Monetary Assets
The Fund Balance with Treasury is the unexpended balances of appropriation accounts, trust accounts, and revolving funds. It is available to finance authorized commitments relative to goods, services, and benefits. The Department does not maintain cash in commercial bank accounts for the funds reported in the Consolidated Balance Sheet, except for the Emergencies in the Diplomatic and Consular Services and the Foreign Service National Defined Contributions Retirement Fund. Treasury processes domestic cash receipts and disbursements on behalf of the Department and the Department’s accounting records are reconciled with those of Treasury on a monthly basis.
The Department operates two Financial Service Centers located in Bangkok, Thailand and Charleston, South Carolina. These provide financial support for the Department and other Federal agencies’ operations overseas. The U.S. Disbursing Officer at each Center has the delegated authority to disburse funds on behalf of the Treasury. See Notes 3 and 6.
Accounts and Loans Receivable
Accounts and Loans Receivable consist of Intragovernmental Accounts Receivable and non-Federal Accounts and Loans Receivable. Intragovernmental Accounts Receivable are amounts owed the Department principally from other Federal agencies for ICASS services, reimbursable agreements, and Working Capital Fund services. Accounts and Loans Receivable from non-Federal entities primarily consist of amounts owed the Department for civil monetary fines and penalties, Value Added Tax (VAT) reimbursements not yet received, repatriation loans due, and IBWC receivables for Mexico’s share of IBWC activities. Civil monetary fines and penalties are assessed on individuals for such infractions as violating the terms and munitions licenses, exporting unauthorized defense articles and services, and violation of manufacturing licenses agreements. VAT receivables are for taxes paid on purchases overseas in which the Department has reimbursable agreements with the country for taxes it pays. The U.S. and Mexican governments generally share the total costs of IBWC projects in proportion to their respective benefits in cases of projects for mutual control and utilization of the waters of a boundary river, unless the Governments have predetermined by treaty the division of costs according to the nature of a project.
The Department provides repatriation loans for destitute American citizens overseas whereby the Department becomes the lender of last resort. These loans provide assistance to pay for return transportation, food and lodging, and medical expenses. The borrower executes a promissory note without collateral. Consequently, the loans are made anticipating a low rate of recovery. Interest, penalties, and administrative fees are assessed if the loan becomes delinquent.
Accounts and Loans Receivable from non-Federal entities are subject to the full debt collection cycle and mechanisms, e.g., salary offset, referral to collection agents, and Treasury offset. In addition, Accounts Receivable from non-Federal entities are assessed interest, penalties, and administrative fees if they become delinquent. Interest and penalties are assessed at the Current Value of Funds Rate established by Treasury. Accounts Receivable is reduced to net realizable value by an Allowance for Uncollectible Accounts. This allowance is recorded using aging methodologies based on an analysis of past collections and write-offs. See Note 5 for more information on Accounts and Loans Receivable, Net.
Interest earned on investments, but not received as of September 30, is recognized as interest receivable.
Advances and Prepayments
Payments made in advance of the receipt of goods and services are recorded as advances or prepayments, and recognized as expenses when the related goods and services are received. Prepayments are made principally to other Federal entities or lease holders for future services. Advances are made to Department employees for official travel, salary advances to Department employees transferring to overseas assignments, and other miscellaneous prepayments and advances for future services. Advances and prepayments are reported as Other Assets on the Consolidated Balance Sheet. Typically, USAID Federal assistance results in a net advance in Other Assets. Additional information may be found in Note 8.
The Department has several accounts that have the authority to invest cash resources. For these accounts, the cash resources not required to meet current expenditures are invested in interest-bearing obligations of the U.S. Government. These investments consist of U.S. Treasury special issues and securities. Special issues are unique public debt obligations for purchase exclusively by the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund and for which interest is computed and paid semi-annually on June 30 and December 31. They are purchased and redeemed at par, which is their carrying value on the Consolidated Balance Sheet.
Investments by the Department’s Gift, Israeli Arab Scholarship, Eisenhower Exchange Fellowship, Middle Eastern-Western Dialogue, and International Center accounts are in U.S. Treasury securities. Interest on these investments is paid semi-annually at various rates. These investments are reported at acquisition cost, which equals the face value net of unamortized discounts or premiums. Discounts and premiums are amortized over the life of the security using the straight-line method for Gift Funds investments, and effective interest method for the other accounts. Additional information on Investments can be found in Note 4.
Property and Equipment
Real property assets primarily consist of facilities used for U.S. diplomatic missions abroad and capital improvements to these facilities, including unimproved land; residential and functional-use buildings such as embassy/consulate office buildings; office annexes and support facilities; and construction-in-progress. Title to these properties is held under various conditions including fee simple, restricted use, crown lease, and deed of use agreement. Some of these properties are considered historical treasures and are considered multi-use heritage assets. These items are reported on the Consolidated Balance Sheet, in Note 7 to the financial statements, and in the Heritage Assets Section.
The Department also owns several domestic real properties, including the National Foreign Affairs Training Center (Arlington, Va.); the International Center (Washington, D.C.); the Charleston Financial Services Center (S.C.); the Beltsville Information Management Center (Md.); the Florida Regional Center (Ft. Lauderdale); and consular centers in Charleston, S.C., Portsmouth, N.H., and Williamsburg, Ky. The Foreign Missions Act authorizes the Department to facilitate the secure and efficient operation in the United States of foreign missions. The Act established the Office of Foreign Missions to manage acquisitions, including leases, additions, and sales of real property by foreign missions. In certain cases, based on reciprocity, the Department owns real property in the United States that is used by foreign missions for diplomatic purposes. The IBWC owns buildings and structures related to its boundary preservation, flood control, and sanitation programs.
Buildings and structures are carried at either actual or estimated historical cost. The Department capitalizes all costs for constructing new buildings and building acquisitions regardless of cost, and all other improvements of $1 million or more. Costs incurred for constructing new facilities, major rehabilitations, or other improvements in the design or construction stage are recorded as construction-in-progress. After these projects are substantially complete, costs are transferred to Buildings and Structures or Leasehold Improvements, as appropriate. Depreciation is computed on a straight-line basis over the asset’s estimated life and begins when the property is placed into service. The estimated useful lives for real property are as follows:
|Asset Category||Estimated Useful Life|
|Land Improvements||30 years|
|Buildings and Structures||10 to 50 years|
|Assets Under Capital Lease||Lease term or 30 years|
|Leasehold Improvements||Lesser of lease term or 10 years|
Personal property consists of several asset categories including aircraft, vehicles, security equipment, communication equipment, automated data processing (ADP) equipment, reproduction equipment, and software. The Department holds title to these assets, some of which are operated in unusual conditions, as described below.
The Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) uses aircraft to help eradicate and stop the flow of illegal drugs. To accomplish its mission, INL maintains an aircraft fleet that is one of the largest Federal, nonmilitary fleets. Most of the aircraft are under direct INL air wing management. However, a number of aircraft are managed by host-countries. The Department holds title to most of the aircraft under these programs and requires congressional notification to transfer title for any aircraft to foreign governments. INL contracts with firms to provide maintenance support depending on whether the aircraft are INL air wing managed or host-country managed. INL air wing managed aircraft are maintained to Federal Aviation Administration standards that involve routine inspection, as well as scheduled maintenance and replacements of certain parts after given hours of use. Host-country managed aircraft are maintained to host-country requirements, which are less than Federal Aviation Administration standards.
The Department also maintains a large vehicle fleet that operates overseas. Many vehicles require armoring for security reasons. For some locations, large utility vehicles are used instead of conventional sedans. In addition, the Department contracts with firms to provide support in strife-torn areas, such as Iraq and Afghanistan. Contractor support includes the purchase and operation of armored vehicles. Under the terms of the contracts, the Department has title to the contractor-held vehicles.
Personal property and equipment with an acquisition cost of $25,000 or more, and a useful life of two or more years, is capitalized at cost. Additionally, all vehicles are capitalized, as well as internal use software with cost of $500,000 or more. Except for contractor-held vehicles in Iraq and Afghanistan, depreciation is calculated on a straight-line basis over the asset’s estimated life and begins when the property is placed into service. Contractor-held vehicles in Iraq and Afghanistan, due to the harsh operating conditions, are depreciated on a double-declining balance basis. The estimated useful lives for personal property are as follows:
|Asset Category||Estimated Useful Life|
|INL air wing managed||10 years|
|Host-country managed||5 years|
|Department managed||3 to 6 years|
|Contractor-held in Iraq and Afghanistan||2 ½ years|
|Security Equipment||3 to 15 years|
|Communication Equipment||3 to 20 years|
|ADP Equipment||3 to 6 years|
|Reproduction Equipment||3 to 15 years|
|Internal Use Software||Estimated useful life or 5 years|
See Note 7, Property and Equipment, Net, for additional information.
Leases are accounted for as capital leases if the value is $1 million or more and they meet one of the following criteria: (1) the lease transfers ownership of the property by the end of the lease term; (2) the lease contains an option to purchase the property at a bargain price; (3) the lease term is equal to or greater than 75 percent of the estimated useful life of the property; or (4) at the inception of the lease, the present value of the minimum lease payment equals or exceeds 90 percent of the fair value of the leased property. The initial recording of a lease’s value (with a corresponding liability) is the lesser of the net present value of the lease payments or the fair value of the leased property. Capital leases that meet criteria (1) or (2) are depreciated over the useful life of the asset (30 years). Capital leases that meet criteria (3) or (4) are depreciated over the term of the lease. Capital lease liabilities are amortized over the term of the lease; if the lease has an indefinite term, the term is capped at 50 years. Additional information on capital leases is disclosed in Note 12, Leases.
Stewardship Property and Equipment
Stewardship Property and Equipment, or Heritage Assets, are assets that have historical or natural significance; are of cultural, educational, or artistic importance; or have significant architectural characteristics. They are generally considered priceless and are expected to be preserved indefinitely. As such, these assets are reported in terms of physical units rather than cost or other monetary values. See Note 7.
The Department awards educational, cultural exchange, and refugee assistance grants to various individuals, universities, and non-profit organizations. Budgetary obligations are recorded when grants are awarded. Grant funds are disbursed in two ways: grantees draw funds commensurate with their immediate cash needs via HHS’ Payment Management System; or grantees request reimbursement for their expenditures.
Accounts payable represent the amounts accrued for contracts for goods and services received but unpaid at the end of the fiscal year and unreimbursed grant expenditures. In addition to accounts payables recorded through normal business activities, unbilled payables are estimated based on historical data.
Accrued Annual, Sick, and Other Leave
Annual leave is accrued as it is earned by Department employees, and the accrual is reduced as leave is taken. Throughout the year, the balance in the accrued annual leave liability account is adjusted to reflect current pay rates. The amount of the adjustment is recorded as an expense. Current or prior year appropriations are not available to fund annual leave earned but not taken. Funding occurs in the year the leave is taken and payment is made. Sick leave and other types of non-vested leave are expensed as taken.
Employee Benefit Plans
Retirement Plans: Civil Service employees participate in either the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) or the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS). Members of the Foreign Service participate in either the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability System (FSRDS) or the Foreign Service Pension System (FSPS).
Employees covered under CSRS contribute 7 percent of their salary; the Department contributes 7 percent. Employees covered under CSRS also contribute 1.45 percent of their salary to Medicare insurance; the Department makes a matching contribution. On January 1, 1987, FERS went into effect pursuant to Public Law No. 99-335. Most employees hired after December 31, 1983, are automatically covered by FERS and Social Security. Employees hired prior to January 1, 1984, were allowed to join FERS or remain in CSRS. Employees participating in FERS contribute 0.8 percent or 3.1 percent (depending on date of hire) of their salary, with the Department making contributions of 13.7 percent or 11.9 percent. FERS employees also contribute 6.2 percent to Social Security and 1.45 percent to Medicare insurance. The Department makes matching contributions to both. A primary feature of FERS is that it offers a Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) into which the Department automatically contributes 1 percent of pay and matches employee contributions up to an additional 4 percent.
Foreign Service employees hired prior to January 1, 1984 participate in FSRDS, with certain exceptions. FSPS was established pursuant to Section 415 of Public Law No. 99-335, which became effective June 6, 1986. Foreign Service employees hired after December 31, 1983 participate in FSPS with certain exceptions. FSRDS employees contribute 7.25 percent of their salary; the Department contributes 7.25 percent. FSPS employees contribute 1.35 percent of their salary; the Department contributes 20.22 percent. FSRDS and FSPS employees contribute 1.45 percent of their salary to Medicare; the Department matches their contribution. FSPS employees also contribute 6.2 percent to Social Security; the Department makes a matching contribution. Similar to FERS, FSPS also offers the TSP.
Foreign Service National (FSN) employees at overseas posts who were hired prior to January 1, 1984, are covered under CSRS. FSN employees hired after that date are covered under a variety of local government plans in compliance with the host country’s laws and regulations. In cases where the host country does not mandate plans or the plans are inadequate, employees are covered by plans that conform to the prevailing practices of comparable employers.
Health Insurance: Most American employees participate in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP), a voluntary program that provides protection for enrollees and eligible family members in cases of illness and/or accident. Under FEHBP, the Department contributes the employer’s share of the premium as determined by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM).
Life Insurance: Unless specifically waived, employees are covered by the Federal Employees Group Life Insurance Program (FEGLIP). FEGLIP automatically covers eligible employees for basic life insurance in amounts equivalent to an employee’s annual pay, rounded up to the next thousand dollars plus $2,000. The Department pays one-third and employees pay two-thirds of the premium. Enrollees and their family members are eligible for additional insurance coverage, but the enrollee is responsible for the cost of the additional coverage.
Other Post Employment Benefits: The Department does not report CSRS, FERS, FEHBP, or FEGLIP assets, accumulated plan benefits, or unfunded liabilities applicable to its employees; OPM reports this information. As required by SFFAS No. 5, Accounting for Liabilities of the Federal Government, the Department reports the full cost of employee benefits for the programs that OPM administers. The Department recognizes an expense and imputed financing source for the annualized unfunded portion of CSRS, post-retirement health benefits, and life insurance for employees covered by these programs. The additional costs are not owed or paid to OPM, and thus are not reported on the Consolidated Balance Sheet as a liability. Instead, they are reported as an imputed financing source from costs absorbed from others on the Consolidated Statement of Changes in Net Position.
Future Workers’ Compensation Benefits
The Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) provides income and medical cost protection to cover Federal employees injured on the job or who have incurred a work-related occupational disease, and beneficiaries of employees whose death is attributable to job-related injury or occupational disease. The DOL administers the FECA program. DOL initially pays valid claims and bills the employing Federal agency. DOL calculates the actuarial liability for future workers’ compensation benefits and reports to each agency its share of the liability.
Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund
The Department manages the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund (FSRDF). To ensure it operates on a sound financial basis, the Department retains an actuarial firm to perform a valuation to project if the Fund’s assets together with the expected future contributions are adequate to cover the value of future promised benefits. To perform this valuation the actuary projects the expected value of future benefits and the stream of expected future employer and employee contributions. The valuation serves as a basis for the determination of the needed employer contributions to the retirement fund and is based on a wide variety of economic assumptions, such as merit salary increases and demographic assumptions, such as rates of mortality. Since both the economic and demographic experience change over time, it is essential to conduct periodic reviews of the actual experience and to adjust the assumptions in the valuation, as appropriate. The Department’s actuary completes an Actuarial Experience Study approximately every five years to ensure the assumptions reflect the most recent experience and future expectations. The Department’s last study was completed in FY 2018. The economic assumptions changes from the experience study are different from the economic assumptions changes determined under SFFAS No. 33, Pensions, Other Retirement Benefits, and Other Postemployment Benefits. The changes resulting from the 2018 study are described later in this note. Also see Note 10, After-Employment Benefit Liability, for the Department’s accounting policy for FSRDF retirement-related benefits and the associated actuarial present value of projected plan benefits.
Foreign Service Nationals’ After-Employment Benefits
Defined Contributions Fund (DCF): This fund provides retirement benefits for FSN employees in countries where the Department has made a public interest determination to discontinue participation in the Local Social Security System. Title 22, Foreign Relations and Intercourse, Section 3968, Local Compensation Plans, provides the authority to the Department to establish such benefits as part of a total compensation plan for these employees.
Defined Benefit Plans: The Department has implemented various arrangements for defined benefit pension plans in other countries, for the benefit of some FSN employees. Some of these plans supplement the host country’s equivalent to U.S. social security, others do not. While none of these supplemental plans are mandated by the host country, some are substitutes for optional tiers of a host country’s social security system. The Department accounts for these plans under the provisions and guidance contained in International Accounting Standards (IAS) No. 19, Employee Benefits. IAS No. 19 provides a better structure for the reporting of these plans which are established in accordance with local practices in countries overseas.
Lump Sum Retirement and Severance: Under some local compensation plans, FSN employees are entitled to receive a lump-sum separation payment when they resign, retire, or otherwise separate through no fault of their own. The amount of the payment is generally based on length of service, rate of pay at the time of separation, and the type of separation.
International Organizations Liability
The United States is a member of the United Nations (UN) and other international organizations and supports UN peacekeeping operations. As such, the United States either contributes to voluntary funds or an assessed share of the budgets and expenses of these organizations and activities. These payments are funded through congressional appropriations to the Department. The purpose of these appropriations is to ensure continued American leadership within those organizations and activities that serve important U.S. interests. Funding by appropriations for dues assessed for certain international organizations is not received until the fiscal year following assessment. These commitments are regarded as funded only when monies are authorized and appropriated by Congress. For financial reporting purposes, the amounts assessed, pledged, and unpaid are reported as liabilities of the Department. Additional information is disclosed in Note 11.
Contingent liabilities are liabilities where the existence or amount of the liability cannot be determined with certainty pending the outcome of future events. The Department recognizes contingent liabilities when the liability is probable and reasonably estimable. See Note 13.
The Department’s net position contains the following components:
Unexpended Appropriations: Unexpended appropriations is the sum of undelivered orders and unobligated balances. Undelivered orders represent the amount of obligations incurred for goods or services ordered, but not yet received. An unobligated balance is the amount available after deducting cumulative obligations from total budgetary resources. As obligations for goods or services are incurred, the available balance is reduced.
Cumulative Results of Operations: The cumulative results of operations include the accumulated difference between revenues and financing sources less expenses since inception and donations.
Net position of funds from dedicated collections (formerly “earmarked funds”) is separately disclosed. See Note 14.
Accounting records for the Department are maintained in U.S. dollars, while a significant amount of the Department’s overseas expenditures are in foreign currencies. For accounting purposes, overseas obligations and disbursements are recorded in U.S. dollars based on the rate of exchange as of the date of the transaction. Foreign currency payments are made by the U.S. Disbursing Office.
Fiduciary activities are the collection or receipt, and the management, protection, accounting, investment, and disposition by the Federal Government of cash or other assets in which non-Federal individuals or entities have an ownership interest that the Federal Government must uphold. The Department’s fiduciary activities are not recognized on the principal financial statements, but are reported on schedules as a note to the financial statements. The Department’s fiduciary activities include receiving contributions from donors for the purpose of providing compensation for certain claims within the scope of an established agreement, investment of contributions into Treasury securities, and disbursement of contributions received within the scope of the established agreement. See Note 19.
Change in Accounting Estimate
The Foreign Service Retirement Plans Actuarial Experience Study 2012 – 2017, mentioned earlier in this note, resulted in significant demographic actuarial assumptions changes. These changes to the assumptions as well as changes required by SFFAS No. 33 used to project the valuation of the FSRDF actuarial liability resulted in an overall actuarial loss in 2018 as noted on the Statement of Net Cost. For a further description and itemization, see Note 10.
Use of Estimates
The preparation of financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions, and exercise judgment that affects the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, net position, and disclosure of contingent liabilities as of the date of the financial statements, and the reported amounts of revenues, financing sources, expenses, and obligations incurred during the reporting period. These estimates are based on management’s best knowledge of current events, historical experience, actions the Department may take in the future, and various other assumptions that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances. Due to the size and complexity of many of the Department’s programs, the estimates are subject to a wide range of variables, including assumptions on future economic and financial events. Accordingly, actual results could differ from those estimates.
Certain 2017 amounts have been reclassified to conform to the 2018 presentation.
Note 2. Disclosure Entities and Related Parties
The FASAB issued SFFAS No. 47 on December 23, 2014, and updates FASAB’s Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Concepts 2: Entity and Display. FASAB developed this new guidance to help Federal managers identify entities to be included in the General Purpose Federal Financial Reports and their appropriate reporting requirements, due to increased complexity in certain relationships between the Federal Government and non-Federal entities. Implementation of SFFAS No. 47 began October 1, 2017, for fiscal year 2018.
In response to SFFAS No. 47, the Department conducted a systematic and thorough review of all organizations named in either the Budget of the United States Government or the Department’s Congressional Budget Justification. The Department found that all of the organizations fell into one of the following categories: reports separately to the Department of the Treasury, is reported by another agency, is already included in the Departments financial statements, or is immaterial and does not need to be reported. The Department determined there are no disclosure entities to report. Related parties are discussed below. The IBWC continues to be included as a consolidation entity as reported in Note 1. Additionally, the Department found that the following organizations are already consolidated in these financial statements: International Joint Commission, International Boundary Commission, and International Center.
SFFAS No. 47 requires disclosure of significant Related Party relationships if the reporting entity believes it would be misleading to exclude them. Large international organizations, while not controlled by the United States, are often significantly influenced by the Government as defined in SFFAS No. 47. In many cases, the United States participates in the policy discussion of the organization through the United States’ involvement on boards and counsels. Prior to SFFAS No. 47, the Department determined that the relationship with many international organizations was significant enough to warrant disclosure. Note 11, International Organizations Liability, discusses the Department’s funding, payments, and open liabilities to these organizations at the end of each year. It also presents amounts for the United Nations separately in addition to aggregate amounts for the other organizations. Based on the requirements for related parties in paragraph 89 section a-b, the Department’s current disclosure already meets the SFFAS No. 47 requirements.
The East-West Center (EWC) is a Congressionally-authorized non-profit organization dedicated to educational and policy engagement on substantive issues between the United States and the Asia Pacific region. Established by Congress in 1960, for more than 50 years the EWC has been promoting better relations and understanding among the people and nations of the United States, Asia, and the Pacific through cooperation study, research, and dialogue. Approximately half of EWC’s annual revenues of around $39 million comes from the Department which received an annual appropriation of $16.7 million for EWC in FY 2018. The EWC Board of Governors consists of 18 members including 5 appointed by the Secretary of State and the Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs.
The Department receives an annual appropriation and provides monies to several International Fisheries Commissions to fund the U.S. share of operating expenses for ten international fisheries commissions including the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, International Pacific Halibut Commission, and Pacific Salmon Commission. Each commission facilitates international cooperation by conducting and coordinating scientific studies of fish stocks and other marine resources and their habitats. Many also oversee the allocation of fishing rights to their members. Amounts provided maintain voting privileges and influence in the commissions and organizations to advance the economic and conservation interests of the United States. The Department provided approximately $45 million in FY 2018.
Note 3. Fund Balance with Treasury
Fund Balance with Treasury at September 30, 2018 and 2017, is summarized below (dollars in millions).
|Unobligated Balances Available||$28,280||$26,268|
|Unobligated Balances Unavailable||967||1,165|
|Obligated Balances not yet Disbursed||29,581||27,756|
|Total Unobligated and Obligated||58,828||55,189|
|Deposit and Receipt Funds||107||116|
Note 4. Investments
Investments at September 30, 2018 and 2017, are summarized below (dollars in millions). All investments are classified as Intragovernmental Securities.
|Non-Marketable, Par Value:|
|Special Issue Securities||$19,184||$19,184||2016–2028||1.375% – 5.250%||$137|
|Non-Marketable, Market Based:|
|Israeli Arab Scholarship Fund||5||5||2017–2021||.750% – 2.000%||—|
|Eisenhower Exchange Fellowship Fund||8||8||2017–2019||3.500% – 8.875%||—|
|Middle Eastern-Western Dialogue Fund||12||12||2018–2022||1.000% – 2.000%||—|
|Gift Funds, Treasury Bills||24||24||2017–2026||.750% – 3.125%||—|
|Foreign Service National Defined Contribution Retirement Fund||17||17||2018–2043||0.750% – 2.875%||—|
|Non-Marketable, Par Value:|
|Special Issue Securities||$18,792||$18,792||2018–2028||1.375% – 5.125%||$136|
|Non-Marketable, Market Based:|
|Israeli Arab Scholarship Fund||5||5||2018–2021||0.750% – 2.000%||—|
|Eisenhower Exchange Fellowship Fund||8||8||2018–2019||2.750% – 8.125%||—|
|Middle Eastern-Western Dialogue Fund||13||13||2018–2022||1.000% – 2.000%||—|
|Gift Funds, Treasury Bills||24||24||2017–2026||0.750% – 3.125%||—|
|Foreign Service National Defined Contribution Retirement Fund||10||10||2019–2043||0.750% – 2.875%||—|
The Department’s activities that have the authority to invest cash resources are Funds from Dedicated Collections (see Note 14). The Federal Government does not set aside assets to pay future benefits or other expenditures associated with funds from dedicated collections. The cash receipts collected from the public for funds from dedicated collections are deposited in the Treasury, which uses the cash for general Government purposes. Treasury securities are issued to the Department as evidence of its receipts. Treasury securities are an asset to the Department and a liability to the Treasury. Because the Department and the Treasury are both parts of the Government, these assets and liabilities offset each other from the standpoint of the Government as a whole. For this reason, they do not represent an asset or a liability in the U.S. Government-wide financial statements.
Treasury securities provide the component entity with authority to draw upon the Treasury to make future benefit payments or other expenditures. When the Department requires redemption of these securities to make expenditures, the Government finances those expenditures out of accumulated cash balances, by raising taxes or other receipts, by borrowing from the public or repaying less debt, or by curtailing other expenditures. The Government finances most expenditures in this way.
Note 5. Accounts and Loans Receivable, Net
The Department’s Accounts Receivable and Loans Receivable, Net at September 30, 2018 and 2017, are summarized here (dollars in millions). All are entity receivables.
|Intragovernmental Accounts Receivable||$177||$—||$177||$111||$(1)||$110|
|Non-Intragovernmental Accounts and Loans Receivable||170||(41)||129||130||(37)||93|
The allowances for uncollectible accounts are recorded using aging methodologies based on analysis of historical collections and write-offs.
The total accounts and loans receivable for 2018, net of allowance for uncollectible accounts, is $306 million. This balance consists of $177 million in Federal intragovernmental reimbursable agreements for providing goods and services to other Federal agencies. The $170 million in Accounts and Loans Receivables due from non-Federal entities (see Accounts and Loans Receivable in Note 1) consists mainly of $167 million of civil monetary fines and penalties and Value Added Taxes. The remaining $3 million is repatriation loans and associated administration fees.
Note 6. Cash and Other Monetary Assets
The Cash and Other Monetary Assets at September 30, 2018 and 2017, are summarized below (dollars in millions). There are no restrictions on entity cash. Non-entity cash is restricted as discussed below.
|After-Employment Benefit Assets||$196||$—||$196||$186||$—||$186|
|Emergencies in the Diplomatic and
Foreign Service National After-Employment Benefit Assets
The Defined Contributions Fund (FSN DCF) provides retirement benefits for FSN employees in countries where the Department has made a public interest determination to discontinue participation in the Local Social Security System (LSSS). Title 22, Foreign Relations and Intercourse, Section 3968, Local Compensation Plans, provides the authority to the Department to establish such benefits and identifies as part of a total compensation plan for these employees. The FSN DCF is administered by a third party who invests excess funds in Treasury securities on behalf of the Department. The other monetary assets reported for the FSN DCF is $196 million and $186 million as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.
In 2017, as a result of a unique overseas land purchase transaction at year end, other cash was on hand that was transferred in fiscal year 2018.
Note 7. Property and Equipment, Net
Property and Equipment, Net balances at September 30, 2018 and 2017, are shown in the following table (dollars in millions).
|Land and Land Improvements||$2,782||$(97)||$2,685||$2,716||$(92)||$2,624|
|Buildings and Structures||23,362||(9,145)||14,217||20,887||(8,207)||12,680|
|Assets Under Capital Lease||179||(64)||115||179||(64)||115|
|Structures, Facilities and Leaseholds||1,496||(564)||932||1,381||(526)||855|
|Assets Under Capital Lease||244||(18)||226||244||(6)||238|
|Land and Land Improvements||82||(9)||73||81||(8)||73|
|Total — Real Property||33,180||(10,283)||22,897||31,324||(9,284)||22,040|
|Internal Use Software||305||(251)||54||288||(226)||62|
|Total — Personal Property||3,285||(1,850)||1,435||3,188||(1,711)||1,477|
|Total Property and Equipment, Net||$36,465||$(12,133)||$24,332||$34,512||$(10,995)||$23,517|
Stewardship Property and Equipment; Heritage Assets
The Department maintains collections of art, furnishings and real property (Culturally Significant Property) that are held for public exhibition, education and official functions for visiting chiefs of State, heads of government, foreign ministers and other distinguished foreign and American guests. As the lead institution conducting American diplomacy, the Department uses this property to promote national pride and the distinct cultural diversity of American artists, as well as to recognize the historical, architectural and cultural significance of America’s holdings overseas.
There are nine separate collections of art and furnishings: the Diplomatic Reception Rooms Collection, the Art Bank Program, the Art in Embassies Program, the Cultural Heritage Collection, the Library Rare and Special Book Collection, the Secretary of State’s Register of Culturally Significant Property, the U.S. Diplomacy Center, the Blair House, and the International Boundary and Water Commission. The collections, activity of which is shown in the following table and described more fully in the Required Supplementary Information and Other Information sections of this report, consist of items that were donated or purchased using donated or appropriated funds. The Department provides protection and preservation services to maintain all Heritage Assets in the best possible condition as part of America’s history.
|Diplomatic Reception Rooms Collection||Art Bank Program||Art in Embassies
|Library Rare & Special Book Collection||Secretary of State’s Register of Culturally Significant Property||U.S. Diplomacy Center||Blair House||International Boundary and Water Commission|
|Description||Collectibles – Art and furnishings from the period 1750 to 1825||Collection of American works of art on paper||Collectibles – American works of art||Collections include fine and decorative arts and other cultural objects||Collectibles – Rare books and other publications of historic value||Noncollection – Buildings of historic, cultural, or architectural significance||Collectibles – Historic artifacts, art and other cultural objects||Collections of fine and decorative arts, furnishings, artifacts, other cultural objects, rare books and archival materials in national historic landmark buildings||Monuments that mark the international boundary between the United States and Mexico, Falcon International Dam and Power Plant|
|Acquisition and Withdrawal||Acquired through donation or purchase using donated funds. Excess items are sold.||Acquired through purchase. Excess items are transferred.||Acquired through purchase or donation. Excess items are sold.||The program provides assessment, preservation, and restoration as needed.||Acquired through donation.||Acquired through purchase. Excess items are sold.||Acquired through donation or transfer. Excess items are transferred.||Acquired through purchase, donation or transfer. Excess items are transferred or disposed of via public sale.||The monuments were constructed to mark the international boundary. The dam and power plant were constructed by the United States and Mexico pursuant to Water Treaty of 1944.|
|Condition||Good to excellent||Poor to excellent||Good to excellent||Good to excellent||Poor to good||Poor to excellent||Good to excellent||Good to excellent||Poor to good|
|Number of Assets – 9/30/2016||1,818||2,600||1,149||18,338||1,191||33||4,036||2,605||140|
|Number of Assets – 9/30/2017||1,828||2,628||1,187||18,422||1,250||33||4,363||2,623||140|
|Deferred Maintenance – 9/30/2017||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||$6,038,000||N/A||N/A||$1,474,000|
|Number of Assets – 9/30/2018||1,820||2,620||1,208||18,594||1,282||33||4,884||2,612||140|
|Deferred Maintenance – 9/30/2018||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||$7,955,000||N/A||N/A||$1,474,000|
Note 8. Other Assets
The Department’s Other Assets are primarily comprised of advances and prepayments as described in Note 1. The majority of Intragovernmental Assets are prepayments to USAID in support of the Global Health and Child Survival program and the Defense Security Cooperation Agency in support of the Pakistan Counterinsurgency Capability and Peacekeeping Operations programs. The Non-Intragovernmental Advances are predominantly prepayments to grantees in support of the Global Health and Child Survival program. Other Non-Intragovernmental Advances include prepayments for the Overseas Buildings Operations real property rent and acquisitions. The Department’s Other Assets as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, are summarized below (dollars in millions).
|Other Advances and Prepayments||$1,327||$1,316|
|Other Advances and Prepayments||1,053||993|
|Total Other Assets||$2,420||$2,354|
Note 9. Other Liabilities
The Department’s Other Liabilities at September 30, 2018 and 2017, are summarized below (dollars in millions).
|Federal Employees Compensation Act Benefits||93||—||93||95||—||95|
|Capital Lease Liability||13||60||73||15||79||94|
|Accrued Salaries Payable||261||—||261||248||—||248|
|Pension Benefits Payable||64||—||64||61||—||61|
|Accrued Annual Leave||—||395||395||—||394||394|
|Total Other Liabilities||$1,441||$582||$2,023||$1,401||$578||$1,979|
Environmental Liability Associated with Asbestos Cleanup and Other
The Department has estimated both friable, $8 million, and nonfriable, $87 million, asbestos-related cleanup costs and recognized a liability and related expense for those costs that are both probable and reasonably estimable as of September 30, 2018, consistent with the current guidance in the Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Standards (SFFAS) No. 5, Accounting for Liabilities of the Federal Government; SFFAS No. 6, Accounting for Property, Plant, and Equipment, Chapter 4: Cleanup Costs; and Technical Release (TR) 2, Determining Probable and Reasonably Estimable for Environmental Liabilities in the Federal Government. The remaining $1 million in environmental liability is non-asbestos related cleanup costs for lead based paint.
Liabilities Not Covered by Budgetary Resources
The Department’s liabilities are classified as liabilities covered by budgetary resources, liabilities not covered by budgetary resources, or liabilities not requiring budgetary resources. Liabilities not covered by budgetary resources result from the receipt of goods and services, or occurrence of eligible events in the current or prior periods, for which revenue or other funds to pay the liabilities have not been made available through appropriations or current earnings of the Department. Liabilities not requiring budgetary resources are for liabilities that have not in the past required and will not in the future require the use of budgetary resources. This includes liabilities for clearing accounts, non-fiduciary deposit funds, custodial collections, and unearned revenue. The liabilities in this category at September 30, 2018 and 2017 are summarized in the Schedule of Liabilities Not Covered by Budgetary Resources (dollars in millions).
|Unfunded FECA Liability||$20||$22|
|Total Intragovernmental Liabilities||20||22|
|International Organizations Liability||1,534||1,344|
|After-Employment Benefit Liability:|
|Foreign Service Retirement Actuarial Liability||2,672||1,129|
|Foreign Service Nationals (FSN):|
|Defined Contributions Fund||221||200|
|Defined Benefit Plans||90||61|
|Lump Sum Retirement and Voluntary Severance||397||348|
|Total After-Employment Benefit Liability||3,380||1,738|
|Accrued Annual Leave||395||394|
|Capital Lease Liability||73||94|
|Total Liabilities Not Covered by Budgetary Resources||5,961||4,095|
|Total Liabilities Covered by Budgetary Resources||23,831||22,560|
|Total Liabilities Not Requiring Budgetary Resources||131||126|
Note 10. After-Employment Benefit Liability
The Department of State provides after-employment benefits to both Foreign Service Officers (FSOs) and Foreign Service Nationals (FSNs). FSOs participate in the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability pension plans. FSN employees participate in a variety of plans established by the Department in each country based upon prevailing compensation practices in the host country. The table below summarizes the liability associated with these plans (dollars in millions).
|Foreign Service Officer|
|Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund||$21,927||$19,994|
|Foreign Service Nationals|
|Defined Contributions Fund||221||200|
|Defined Benefit Plans||90||61|
|Lump Sum Retirement and Voluntary Severance||397||348|
|Total After-Employment Benefit Liability||$22,635||$20,603|
Details for these plans are presented as follows.
Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund
The FSRDF finances the operations of the FSRDS and the FSPS. The FSRDS and the FSPS are defined-benefit, single-employer plans. FSRDS was originally established in 1924; FSPS in 1986. The FSRDS is a single-benefit retirement plan. Retirees receive a monthly annuity from FSRDS for the rest of their lives. FSPS provides benefits from three sources: a basic benefit (annuity) from FSPS, Social Security, and the Thrift Savings Plan.
The Department’s financial statements present the Pension Actuarial Liability of the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Program (the “Plan”) as the actuarial present value of projected plan benefits, as required by the SFFAS No. 33, Pensions, Other Retirement Benefits, and other Post Employment Benefits: Reporting the Gains and Losses from Changes in Assumptions and Selecting Discount Rates and Valuation Dates. The Pension Actuarial Liability represents the future periodic payments provided for current employee and retired Plan participants, less the future employee and employing Federal agency contributions, stated in current dollars.
Future periodic payments include benefits expected to be paid to (1) retired or terminated employees or their beneficiaries; (2) beneficiaries of employees who have died; and (3) present employees or their beneficiaries, including refunds of employee contributions as specified by Plan provisions. Total projected service is used to determine eligibility for retirement benefits. The value of voluntary, involuntary, and deferred retirement benefits is based on projected service and assumed salary increases. The value of benefits for disabled employees or survivors of employees is determined by multiplying the benefit the employee or survivor would receive on the date of disability or death, by a ratio of service at the valuation date to projected service at the time of disability or death.
The Pension Actuarial Liability is calculated by applying actuarial assumptions to adjust the projected plan benefits to reflect the discounted time value of money and the probability of payment (by means of decrements such as death, disability, withdrawal or retirement) between the valuation date and the expected date of payment. The Plan uses the aggregate entry age normal actuarial cost method, whereby the present value of projected benefits for each employee is allocated on a level basis (such as a constant percentage of salary) over the employee’s service between entry age and assumed exit age. The portion of the present value allocated to each year is referred to as the normal cost.
The table below presents the normal costs for 2018 and 2017.
As discussed in Note 1 sections Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund and Changes in Accounting Estimate, there was a significant actuarial loss resulting from assumption changes determined appropriate by an experience study performed by actuaries retained by the Department. The Foreign Service Retirement Plans Actuarial Experience Study 2012 – 2017 describes extensive assumption changes, both economic and demographic. The economic assumption change related to merit salary growth experience. The merit salary increase is the portion of the overall annual pay increase that is over and above the annual general salary and locality pay increases, i.e. the salary increase derived from career longevity and promotions.
Demographic assumptions include the set of rates that predict certain events occurring to a group of employees or annuitants. Events of significance to a retirement system are those that result in a commencement or termination of a benefit payment. The events affecting active employees include reasons for leaving the service such as retirement, becoming disabled, terminating service, or death. The events affecting annuitants include, first and foremost, mortality.
The demographic assumption changes included significant revisions to mortality rate assumptions for non-disabled, child, and other survivor annuitants based in the adoption of more modern mortality tables and improvement scales. There were also changes to assumptions related to the future separation of active employees including their probability of withdrawal, retirement, or becoming disabled. The actuarial loss of $1,677 million resulting from these demographic assumption changes can be seen in the following table.
The assumption changes for interest rate, $354 million loss; and inflation, $510 million gain, are not from the experience study. These changes arise in connection with each annual valuation and follow the guidelines of SFFAS No. 33.
Actuarial assumptions are based on the presumption that the Plan will continue. If the Plan terminates, different actuarial assumptions and other factors might be applicable for determining the actuarial present value of accumulated plan benefits.
The following table presents the calculation of the combined FSRDS and FSPS Pension Actuarial Liability and the assumptions used in computing it for the year ended September 30, 2018 and 2017 (dollars in millions).
|Pension Actuarial Liability, Beginning of Year||$19,994||$19,480|
|Interest on Pension Liability||709||729|
|Actuarial (Gains) or Losses:|
|From Assumption Changes|
|Prior Year Service Costs||—||—|
|Total Pension Expense||2,895||1,461|
|Less Payments to Beneficiaries||962||947|
|Pension Actuarial Liability, End of Year||21,927||19,994|
|Less: Net Assets Available for Benefits||19,255||18,865|
|Actuarial Pension Liability – Unfunded||$2,672||$1,129|
|Rate of Return on Investments||3.42%||3.59%|
|Rate of Inflation||1.35%||1.59%|
Net Assets Available for Benefits at September 30, 2018 and 2017, consist of the following (dollars in millions).
|Fund Balance with Treasury||$—||$—|
|Accounts and Interest Receivable||152||151|
|Investments in U.S. Government Securities||19,184||18,792|
|Less: Liabilities Other Than Actuarial||81||78|
|Net Assets Available for Benefits||$19,255||$18,865|
Foreign Service Nationals’ After-Employment Benefit Liabilities
The Department of State operates overseas in over 180 countries and employs a significant number of local nationals, currently over 51,000, known as Foreign Service Nationals (FSNs).
FSNs do not qualify for any Federal civilian benefits (and therefore cannot participate) in any of the Federal civilian pension systems (e.g., Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS), FSRDS, Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), etc.). By statute, the Department is required to establish compensation plans for FSNs in its employ in foreign countries. The plans are based upon prevailing wage and compensation practices in the locality of employment, unless the Department makes a public interest determination to do otherwise. In general, the Department follows host country (i.e., local) practices and conventions in compensating FSNs. The end result is that compensation for FSNs is often not in accord with what would otherwise be offered or required by statute and regulations for Federal civilian employees.
In each country, FSN after-employment benefits are included in the Post’s Local Compensation Plan. Depending on the local practice, the Department offers defined benefit plans, defined contribution plans, and retirement and voluntary severance lump sum payment plans. These plans are typically in addition to or in lieu of participating in the host country’s LSSS. These benefits form an important part of the Department’s total compensation and benefits program that is designed to attract and retain highly skilled and talented FSN employees.
FSN Defined Contributions Fund (FSN DCF)
The Department’s FSN DCF finances two after-employment plans, the FSN Defined Contribution Plan (DCP) and the FSN Voluntary Contribution Plan (VCP).
The Department’s FSN DCP and VCP provide after-employment benefits for FSN employees in countries where the Department has made a public interest determination to discontinue participation in the LSSS. Title 22, Foreign Relations and Intercourse, Section 3968, Local Compensation Plans, provides the authority to the Department to establish such benefits and identifies as part of a total compensation plan for these employees.
The Department contributes 12 percent of each participant’s base salary to the FSN DCP. Participants are not allowed to make contributions to the Plan. The amount of after-employment benefit received by the employee is determined by the amount of the contributions made by the Department along with investment returns and administrative fees. The Department’s obligation is determined by the contributions for the period, and no actuarial assumptions are required to measure the obligation or the expense. The FSN DCP is administered by a third party who invests contributions in U.S. Treasury securities on behalf of the Department. Payroll contributions are sent to the third party administrator, while separation benefits are processed by the Department upon receipt of funds from the third party. As of September 30, 2018, approximately 13,000 FSNs in 30 countries participate in the FSN DCP.
The Department records expense for contributions to the FSN DCP when the employee renders service to the Department, coinciding with the cash contributions to the FSN DCP. Total contributions by the Department in 2018 and 2017 were $28.2 million and $27.8 million, respectively. Total liability reported for the FSN DCP is $204 million and $190 million as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.
The FSN VCP reported employee and employer contributions of $7.4 million and $6.2 million as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively. The total liability reported for the Voluntary Contribution Plan is $17 million and $10 million as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively.
Local Defined Contribution Plans
In 49 countries, the Department has implemented various local arrangements, primarily with third party providers, for defined contribution plans for the benefit of FSNs. Total contributions to these plans by the Department in 2018 and 2017 were $26.6 million and $25 million, respectively.
Defined Benefit Plans
In 12 countries, involving over 3,700 FSNs, the Department has implemented various arrangements for defined benefit pension plans for the benefit of FSNs. Some of these plans supplement the host country’s equivalent to U.S. social security, others do not. While none of these supplemental plans are mandated by the host country, some are substitutes for optional tiers of a host country’s social security system. Such arrangements include (but are not limited to) conventional defined benefit plans with assets held in the name of trustees of the plan who engage plan administrators, investment advisors and actuaries, and plans offered by insurance companies at predetermined rates or with annual adjustments to premiums. The Department deposits funds under various fiduciary-type arrangements, purchases annuities under group insurance contracts or provides reserves to these plans. Benefits under the defined benefit plans are typically based either on years of service and/or the employee’s compensation (generally during a fixed number of years immediately before retirement). The range of assumptions that are used for the defined benefit plans reflect the different economic and regulatory environments within the various countries.
As discussed in Note 1, the Department accounts for these plans under guidance contained in International Accounting Standards (IAS) No. 19, Employee Benefits. In accordance with IAS No. 19, the Department reported the net defined benefit liability of $90 million and $61 million as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively. There was an increase of $29 million in 2018 and a decrease of $7 million in 2017.
The material FSN defined benefit plans include plans in Germany and the United Kingdom (UK) which represent 76 percent of total assets, 77 percent of total projected benefit obligations, and 83 percent of the net defined benefit liability as of September 30, 2018. The Germany Plan’s most recent evaluation report, dated September 13, 2018, is as of July 1, 2018. The UK Plan’s most recent evaluation, dated June 27, 2018, is as of April 6, 2017.
For the Germany Plan the change in the net defined benefit liability was a decrease of $5 million in 2018 and an increase of $6 million in 2017, while for the UK plan the change was an increase of $24 million in 2018 and a decrease of $13 million in 2017.
For Germany, the decrease in the net defined benefit liability in 2018 was primarily due to contributions and investment returns exceeding total actuarial losses, service, and interest costs. The increase in 2017 was primarily due to losses from changes in the financial assumptions, mainly the discount rate.
For the UK Plan in 2018, the increase in the net defined benefit liability was primarily due to losses from Actuarial Assumptions. The decrease in 2017 was due to gains from investment earnings and currency exchange rates.
The tables below show the changes in the projected benefit obligation and plan assets during 2018 and 2017 for the Germany and UK plans (dollars in millions).
|Benefit obligations beginning of year||$374||$329|
|Benefit obligations end of year||$439||$374|
|Fair value of plan assets beginning of year||$318||$268|
|Return on plan assets||9||22|
|Contributions less Benefits Paid||9||16|
|Fair value of plan assets end of year||364||318|
|Net Defined Benefit Liability||$75||$56|
The table below shows the allocation of the plan assets by category during 2018 and 2017 for the German and UK plans.
|Money Market and Cash||2%||2%|
The principal actuarial assumptions used for 2018 and 2017 for the Germany and UK plans are presented below:
|Discount Rate||2.80% – 4.60%||2.90% – 5.00%|
|Salary Increase Rate||2.25% – 5.40%||2.25% – 5.60%|
|Pension Increase Rate||1.75% – 3.40%||1.75% – 3.60%|
Retirement and Voluntary Severance Lump Sum Payments
In 72 countries, FSN employees are provided a lump-sum separation payment when they resign, retire, or otherwise separate through no fault of their own. The amount of the payment is generally based on length of service, rate of pay at the time of separation, and the type of separation. As of September 30, 2018, approximately 23,500 FSNs participate in such plans.
The cost method used for the valuation of the liabilities associated with these plans is the Projected Unit Credit actuarial cost method. The participant’s benefit is first determined using both their projected service and salary at the retirement date. The projected benefit is then multiplied by the ratio of current service to projected service at retirement in order to determine an allocated benefit. The Projected Benefit Obligation (PBO) for the entire plan is calculated as the sum of the individual PBO amounts for each active member. Further, this calculation requires certain actuarial assumptions be made, such as voluntary withdraws, assumed retirement age, death and disability, as well as economic assumptions. For economic assumptions, available market data was scarce for many of the countries where eligible posts are located. Due to the lack of creditable global market data, an approach consistent with that used for the September 30, 2018, FSRDF valuations under SFFAS No. 33 was adopted. Using this approach, the economic assumptions used for the Retirement and Voluntary Severance Lump Sum Payment liability as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, are:
|Rate of inflation||1.42%||1.63%|
Based upon the projection, the total liability reported for the Retirement and Voluntary Severance Lump Sum Payment is $397 million and $348 million as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, respectively, as shown below (dollars in millions):
The table below shows the changes in the projected benefit obligation during 2018 and 2017 (dollars in millions):
|Benefit obligations beginning of year||$348||$326|
|Actuarial (gain) loss on assumptions||26||2|
|Actuarial (gain) loss due to experience||49||40|
|Benefit obligations end of year||$397||$348|
Note 11. International Organizations Liability
The Department’s Bureau of International Organization Affairs (IO) is responsible for the administration, development, and implementation of the United States’ policies in the United Nations (UN), international organizations, and UN peacekeeping operations. The United States contributes either to voluntary funds or an assessed share of the budgets and expenses of these organizations and activities. These missions are supported through Congressional appropriation to the Department’s Contributions to International Organizations (CIO), Contributions for International Peacekeeping Activities (CIPA), and International Organizations and Programs (IO&P) accounts.
A liability is established for assessments received and unpaid and for pledges made and accepted by an international organization. Congress has mandated withholding the payments of dues because of policy restrictions or caps on the percentage of the organization’s operating costs financed by the United States. Without authorization from Congress, the Department cannot pay certain assessed amounts. The amounts of mandated withholdings that will likely not be authorized to be paid in the future do not appear as liabilities on the Balance Sheet of the Department.
Amounts presented in the table represent amounts that are paid through the CIO, CIPA, and IO&P accounts and administered by IO. Payables to international organizations by the Department that are funded through other appropriations are included in Accounts Payable to the extent such payables exist at September 30, 2018 and 2017.
Further information about the Department’s mission to the UN is at usun.state.gov. Details of the IO Liability follow (dollars in millions):
|Regular Membership Assessments Payable to UN||$842||$865|
|Dues Payable to UN Peacekeeping Missions||1,139||546|
|International Organizations Liability||1,323||1,204|
|Total Owed to International Organizations||3,304||2,615|
|Less Amounts Mandated to be Withheld and not likely to be Paid||652||682|
|International Organizations Liability||$2,652||$1,933|
|Total International Organizations Liability||$2,652||$1,933|
Note 12. Leases
The Department is committed to over 10,000 leases, which cover office and functional properties, and residential units for diplomatic missions. The majority of these leases are short-term operating leases. In most cases, management expects that the leases will be renewed or replaced by other leases. Personnel from other U.S. Government agencies occupy some of the leased facilities (both residential and non-residential). These agencies reimburse the Department for the use of the properties. Reimbursements are received for approximately $108 million of the lease costs.
The Department has various leases for real property that meet the criteria as a capital lease in accordance with SFFAS No. 6, Accounting for Property, Plant, and Equipment. Assets that meet the definition of a capital lease and their related lease liability are initially recorded at the present value of the future minimum lease payments or fair market value, whichever is lower. In general, capital leases are depreciated over the estimated useful life or lease terms depending upon which capitalization criteria the capital leases meet at inception. The related liability is amortized over the term of the lease, which can result in a different value in the asset versus the liability.
The following is a summary of Net Assets under Capital Lease and Future Minimum Lease payments as of September 30, 2018 and 2017 (dollars in millions). Lease liabilities are not covered by budgetary resources.
|Net Assets under Capital Leases:||2018||2017|
|Net Assets under Capital Leases||$341||$353|
Future Minimum Lease Payments:
|Fiscal Year||Lease Payments|
|2024 and thereafter||91|
|Total Minimum Lease Payments||148|
|Less: Amount Representing Interest||(75)|
|Liabilities under Capital Leases||$73|
|Fiscal Year||Lease Payments|
|2023 and thereafter||126|
|Total Minimum Lease Payments||202|
|Less: Amount Representing Interest||(108)|
|Liabilities under Capital Leases||$94|
The Department leases real property under operating leases. These leases expire in various years. Minimum future rental payments under operating leases have remaining terms in excess of one year as of September 30, 2018 and 2017 for each of the next 5 years and in aggregate are as follows (dollars in millions):
|2024 and thereafter||190|
|Total Minimum Future Lease Payments||$1,385|
|2023 and thereafter||257|
|Total Minimum Future Lease Payments||$1,594|
Note 13. Contingencies and Commitments
The Department is a party in various material legal matters (litigation, claims, assessments, including pending or threatened litigation, unasserted claims, and claims that may derive from treaties or international agreements) brought against it. We periodically review these matters pending against us. As a result of these reviews, we classify and adjust our contingent liability when we think it is probable that there will be an unfavorable outcome and when a reasonable estimate of the amount can be made.
Additionally, as part of our continuing evaluation of estimates required in the preparation of our financial statements, we evaluated the materiality of cases determined to have a reasonably possible chance of an adverse outcome. As a result of these reviews, the Department believes these claims could result in potential estimable losses of $6 to $793 million if the outcomes were adverse to the Department. Management considers the amount that needs to be recognized as immaterial to the financial statements. The reasonably possible cases involve contract disputes, claims related to embassy construction, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claims, and international claims made against the United States being litigated by the Department.
Certain legal matters to which the Department is a party are administered and, in some instances, litigated and paid by other U.S. Government agencies. Generally, amounts to be paid under any decision, settlement, or award pertaining to these legal matters are funded from the Judgment Fund.
None of the amounts paid under the Judgment Fund on behalf of the Department in 2018 and 2017 had a material effect on the financial position or results of operations of the Department.
As a part of our continuing evaluation of estimates required for the preparation of our financial statements, we recognize settlements of claims and lawsuits and revised other estimates in our contingent liabilities. Management and the Legal Adviser believe we have made adequate provision for the amounts that may become due under the suits, claims, and proceedings we have discussed here.
In addition to the future lease commitments discussed in Note 12, Leases, the Department is committed under obligations for goods and services which have been ordered but not yet received at fiscal year end. These are termed undelivered orders – see Note 16, Statement of Budgetary Resources.
Rewards Programs: Under 22 U.S.C. 2708, the Department has the authority to operate rewards programs that are critical to combating international terrorism, narcotics trafficking, war crimes, and transnational organized crime. The Rewards for Justice Program offers rewards for information leading to the arrest or conviction in any country of persons responsible for acts of international terrorism against U.S. persons or property, or to the location of key terrorist leaders. See further details at . The Narcotics Rewards Program has the authority to offer rewards for information leading to the arrest or conviction in any country of persons committing major foreign violations of U.S. narcotics laws or the killing or kidnapping of U.S. narcotics law enforcement officers or their family members. The War Crimes Rewards Program offers rewards for information leading to the arrest, transfer, or conviction of persons indicted by a judge of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, or the Special Court of Sierra Leone for serious violations of international humanitarian law. The Transnational Organized Crime Rewards Program offers rewards for information leading to the arrest or conviction of significant members of transnational criminal organizations involved in activities that threaten national security, such as human trafficking, and trafficking in arms or other illicit goods.
Pending reward offers under the four programs total $950 million. Under the programs, we have paid out $297 million since 2003. Reward payments are funded from Diplomatic and Consular Programs prior year expired, unobligated balances using available transfer authorities as necessary. Management and the Legal Adviser believe there is adequate funding for the amounts that may become due under the Rewards Program.
Note 14. Funds from Dedicated Collections
Funds from Dedicated Collections are financed by specifically identified revenues, often supplemented by other financing sources, which remain available over time. These specifically identified revenues and other financing sources are required by statute to be used for designated activities or purposes, and must be accounted for separately from the Government’s general revenues. There are no intra-departmental transactions between the various funds from dedicated collections.
The Department administers nine funds from dedicated collections as listed below.
|Treasury Fund Symbol||Description||Statute|
|19X5515||H-1B and L Fraud Prevention and Detection||118 Stat. 3357|
|19X8166||American Studies Endowment Fund||108 Stat. 425|
|19X8167||Trust Funds||22 U.S.C. 1479|
|19X8271||Israeli Arab Scholarship Programs||105 Stat. 696, 697|
|19X8272||Eastern Europe Student Exchange Endowment Fund||105 Stat. 699|
|19X8813||Center for Middle Eastern-Western Dialogue Trust Fund||118 Stat. 84|
|19X8821||Unconditional Gift Fund||22 U.S.C. 809, 1046|
|19X8822||Conditional Gift Fund||22 U.S.C. 809, 1046|
|95X8276||Eisenhower Exchange Fellowship Program Trust Fund||Public Law No. 101-454|
The table below displays the dedicated collection amounts as of September 30, 2018 and 2017 (dollars in millions).
|Balance Sheet as of September 30|
|Fund Balance with Treasury||$199||$177|
|Cumulative Results of Operations||353||$322|
|Total Liabilities and Net Position||$355||$322|
Statement of Net Cost for the Year Ended September 30
|Gross Program Costs||$46||$54|
|Less: Earned Revenues||1||—|
|Net Program Costs||45||54|
|Net Cost of Operations||$45||$54|
Statement of Changes in Net Position for the Year Ended September 30
|Net Position Beginning of Period||$322||$316|
|Budgetary Financing Sources||64||60|
|Other Financing Sources||12||—|
|Net Cost of Operations||(45)||(54)|
|Change in Net Position||31||6|
|Net Position End of Period||$353||$322|
Note 15. Statement of Net Cost
The Consolidated Statement of Net Cost is presented by major program instead of strategic goal. The Department believes this is more consistent and transparent with its Congressional Budget submissions. The net cost of operations is the gross (i.e., total) cost incurred by the Department, less any exchange (i.e., earned) revenue.
The Consolidating Schedule of Net Cost categorizes costs and revenues by major program and responsibility segment. A responsibility segment is the component that carries out a mission or major line of activity, and whose managers report directly to top management. For the Department, a Bureau (e.g., Bureau of African Affairs) is considered a responsibility segment. For presentation purposes, Bureaus have been summarized and reported at the Under Secretary level (e.g., Under Secretary for Political Affairs).
|MAJOR PROGRAM||Under Secretary for||Intra-Departmental
|Peace and Security|
|Net Program Costs||698||—||972||463||—||—||—||2,133|
|Democracy, Human Rights, and Governance|
|Net Program Costs||—||—||528||24||—||—||—||552|
|Health, Education, and Social Services|
|Net Program Costs||—||—||768||8,103||—||—||—||8,871|
|Humanitarian, Economic Development, and Environment|
|Net Program Costs||—||—||3,033||133||—||—||—||3,166|
|International Organizations and Commissions|
|Net Program Costs||1||46||—||2,984||—||—||—||3,031|
|Diplomatic and Consular Programs|
|Net Program Costs||195||80||271||6,279||319||769||(58)||7,855|
|Administration of Foreign Affairs|
|Net Program Costs Before Assumption Changes||—||—||482||5,647||(612)||(3,924)||(9)||1,584|
|Actuarial Loss on Pension Assumption Changes||—||—||94||1,073||366||14||—||1,547|
|Net Program Costs||—||—||576||6,720||(246)||(3,910)||(9)||3,131|
|Total Net Cost||$894||$126||$6,148||$24,706||$73||$(3,141)||$(67)||$28,739|
The presentation of program results is based on the Department’s major programs related to the major goals established pursuant to the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) of 1993 and the GPRA Modernization Act of 2010. The Department’s strategic goals and strategic priorities are defined in Management‘s Discussion and Analysis section of this report.
The Administration of Foreign Affairs program relates to high-level executive direction (e.g., Office of the Secretary, Office of the Legal Adviser), general management, and certain administrative support costs. For the years ended September 30, 2018 and 2017, these consist of costs and earned revenue summarized below (dollars in millions):
|Administration of Foreign Affairs – Other||$1,737||$66||$1,671||$1,586||$53||$1,533|
|Working Capital Fund||1,221||1,091||130||1,266||1,057||209|
|Less Earned Revenue:|
|Administration of Foreign Affairs – Other||101||64||37||103||52||51|
|Working Capital Fund||1,308||1,091||217||1,236||1,057||179|
|Total Earned Revenue||6,308||4,382||1,926||6,053||4,161||1,892|
|Actuarial Loss on Pension Assumption Changes||1,547||—||1,547||326||—||326|
|Total Net Cost for Administration of Foreign Affairs||$3,140||$9||$3,131||$1,701||$9||$1,692|
Diplomatic and Consular Programs support essential diplomatic personnel and programs worldwide. It also supports the infrastructure for U.S. Government agencies and employees at diplomatic and consular posts around the globe. For the years ended September 30, 2018 and 2017, these consist of costs and earned revenue summarized below (dollars in millions):
|Diplomatic Programs and Other||$4,183||$332||$3,851||$4,253||$300||$3,953|
|Overseas Buildings Operations||2,150||9||2,141||1,747||358||1,389|
|Central Salaries and Benefits||3,439||—||3,439||3,371||—||3,371|
|Less Earned Revenue:|
|Diplomatic Programs and Other||873||275||598||907||242||665|
|Overseas Buildings Operations||1,364||8||1,356||1,801||356||1,445|
|Total Earned Revenue||6,945||337||6,608||7,464||650||6,814|
|Total Net Cost for Diplomatic and Consular Programs||$7,913||$58||$7,855||$7,459||$59||$7,400|
Since the costs incurred by the Under Secretary for Management and the Secretariat are primarily support costs, these costs were distributed to the other Under Secretaries to show the full costs under the responsibility segments that have direct control over the Department’s programs. One exception within the Under Secretary for Management is the Bureau of Consular Affairs, which is responsible for the Achieving Consular Excellence program. As a result, these costs were not allocated and continue to be reported as the Under Secretary for Management.
The Under Secretary for Management/Secretariat costs (except for the Bureau of Consular Affairs) were allocated to the other Department responsibility segments based on the percentage of total costs by organization for each program. The allocation of these costs to the other Under Secretaries and to the Bureau of Consular Affairs in 2018 and 2017 was as follows (dollars in millions):
|Management (Consular Affairs)||5,224||5,402|
|Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs||1,757||1,318|
|Arms Control, International Security Affairs||246||242|
|Civilian Security, Democracy and Human Rights||1,302||429|
|Economic Growth, Energy and Environment||58||47|
Inter-Entity Costs and Imputed Financing: Full cost includes the costs of goods or services received from other Federal entities (referred to as inter-entity costs) regardless if the Department reimburses that entity. To measure the full cost of activities, SFFAS No. 4, Managerial Cost Accounting, requires that total costs of programs include costs that are paid by other U.S. Government entities, if material. As provided by SFFAS No. 4, OMB issued a Memorandum in April 1998, entitled “Technical Guidance on the Implementation of Managerial Cost Accounting Standards for the Government.” In that Memorandum, OMB established that reporting entities should recognize inter-entity costs for (1) employees’ pension benefits; (2) health insurance, life insurance, and other benefits for retired employees; (3) other post-retirement benefits for retired, terminated and inactive employees, including severance payments, training and counseling, continued health care, and unemployment and workers’ compensation under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act; and (4) payments made in litigation proceedings.
The Department recognizes an imputed financing source on the Statement of Changes in Net Position for the value of inter-entity costs paid by other U.S. Government entities. This consists of all inter-entity amounts as reported below, except for the Federal Workers’ Compensation Benefits (FWCB). For FWCB, the Department recognizes its share of the change in the actuarial liability for FWCB as determined by the Department of Labor (DOL). The Department reimburses DOL for FWCB paid to current and former Department employees.
The following inter-entity costs and imputed financing sources were recognized in the Statement of Net Cost and Statement of Changes in Net Position, for the years ended September 30, 2018 and 2017 (dollars in millions):
|Other Post-Employment Benefits:|
|Civil Service Retirement Program||$32||$15|
|Federal Employees Health Benefits Program||154||121|
|Federal Employees Group Life Insurance Program||1||1|
|Litigation funded by Treasury Judgment Fund||—||—|
|Subtotal – Imputed Financing Source||187||137|
|Future Workers’ Compensation Benefits||18||19|
|Total Inter-Entity Costs||$205||$156|
Intra-departmental Eliminations: Intra-departmental eliminations of cost and revenue were recorded against the program that provided the service. Therefore, the full program cost was reported by leaving the reporting of cost with the program that received the service.
Earned revenues occur when the Department provides goods or services to the public or another Federal entity. Earned revenues are reported regardless of whether the Department is permitted to retain all or part of the revenue. Specifically, the Department collects, but does not retain passport, visa, and certain other consular fees.
Earned revenues for the years ended September 30, 2018 and 2017, consist of the following (dollars in millions):
|Passport, Visa and Other Consular Fees||$686||—||$686||$693||$—||$693|
|Machine Readable Visa||1,915||—||1,915||1,938||—||1,938|
|Passport, Visa and Other Surcharges||1,593||—||1,593||1,617||—||1,617|
|Fingerprint Processing, Diversity Lottery, and Affadavit of Support||21||—||21||20||—||20|
|Subtotal – Consular Fees||4,464||—||4,464||4,537||—||4,537|
|Other Reimbursable Agreements||2,459||345||2,114||3,024||667||2,357|
|Working Capital Fund||1,308||1,091||217||1,236||1,057||179|
Generally, a Federal agency may not earn revenue from outside sources unless it obtains specific statutory authority. Accordingly, the pricing policy for any earned revenue depends on the revenue’s nature, and the statutory authority under which the Department is allowed to earn and retain (or not retain) the revenue. Earned revenue that the Department is not authorized to retain is deposited into the Treasury’s General Fund.
The FSRDF finances the operations of the FSRDS and the FSPS. The FSRDF receives revenue from employee/employer contributions, a U.S. Government contribution, and interest on investments. By law, FSRDS participants contribute 7.25 percent of their base salary, and each employing agency contributes 7.25 percent; FSPS participants contribute 1.35 percent of their base salary and each employing agency contributes 20.22 percent. Employing agencies report employee/employer contributions biweekly. Total employee/employer contributions for 2018 and 2017 were $392 million and $387 million, respectively.
The FSRDF also receives a U.S. Government contribution to finance (1) FSRDS benefits not funded by employee/employer contributions; (2) interest on FSRDS unfunded liability; (3) FSRDS disbursements attributable to military service; and (4) FSPS supplemental liability payment. The U.S. Government contributions for 2018 and 2017 were $414 million and $302 million, respectively. FSRDF cash resources are invested in special non-marketable securities issued by the Treasury. Total interest earned on these investments for 2018 and 2017 were $548 million and $562 million, respectively.
Consular Fees are established primarily on a cost recovery basis and are determined by periodic cost studies. Certain fees, such as the machine readable Border Crossing Cards, are determined statutorily. Reimbursable Agreements with Federal agencies are established and billed on a cost-recovery basis. ICASS billings are computed on a cost recovery basis; billings are calculated to cover all operating, overhead, and replacement costs of capital assets, based on budget submissions, budget updates, and other factors. In addition to services covered under ICASS, the Department provides administrative support to other agencies overseas for which the Department does not charge. Areas of support primarily include buildings and facilities, diplomatic security (other than the local guard program), overseas employment, communications, diplomatic pouch, receptionist and selected information management activities. The Department receives direct appropriations to provide this support.
Note 16. Combined Statement of Budgetary Resources
The Combined Statement of Budgetary Resources reports information on how budgetary resources were made available and their status as of and for the year ended September 30, 2018 and 2017. Intra-departmental transactions have not been eliminated in the amounts presented.
The Budgetary Resources section presents the total budgetary resources available to the Department. For the year ended September 30, 2018 and 2017, the Department received approximately $72.3 billion and $71.0 billion in budgetary resources, respectively, primarily consisting of the following:
|Source of Budgetary Resources||2018||2017|
|Direct or related appropriations||$31.0||$33.0|
|Authority financed from Trust Funds||1.1||1.0|
|Spending authority from providing goods and services||11.4||11.8|
|Unobligated balance from prior year budget authority, net||28.8||25.2|
|Total Budgetary Resources||$72.3||$71.0|
|Unobligated Balance – End of Prior Year||$27.4||$23.7|
|Transfers In/(Out) Prior Year Authority||0.1||—|
|Recoveries of Prior Year Paid Obligations||0.1||0.1|
|Recoveries of Prior Year Unpaid Obligations||1.3||1.5|
|Funds Returned to Treasury||(0.1)||(0.2)|
|Unobligated balance from prior year budget authority, net||$28.8||$25.1|
|For the Fiscal Year Ended September 30, 2018|
|Obligations Apportioned Under|
|Exempt from Apportionment||426||—||426|
|For the Fiscal Year Ended September 30, 2017|
|Obligations Apportioned Under|
|Exempt from Apportionment||316||—||316|
Apportionment categories are determined in accordance with the guidance provided in OMB Circular A-11, Preparation, Submission and Execution of the Budget, revised, or direction from OMB. Category A obligations represent resources apportioned for calendar quarters. Category B obligations represent resources apportioned for other time periods; for activities, projects, and objectives or for a combination, thereof.
Status of Undelivered Orders
Undelivered Orders (UDO) represents the amount of goods and/or services ordered, which have not been actually or constructively received. This amount includes any orders which may have been prepaid or advanced but for which delivery or performance has not yet occurred.
The amount of budgetary resources obligated for UDO for all activities as of September 30, 2018 and 2017, was approximately $27.9 billion and $27.2 billion, respectively. This includes amounts of $1.7 billion for September 30, 2018 and $1.6 billion for September 30, 2017, pertaining to revolving funds, trust funds, and substantial commercial activities. The amounts for both Federal and Non-Federal undelivered orders at September 30, 2018 are as follows:
Permanent Indefinite Appropriations
A permanent indefinite appropriation is open-ended as to both its period of availability (amount of time the agency has to spend the funds) and its amount. The Department received permanent indefinite appropriations of $255 million and $143 million for 2018 and 2017, respectively. The permanent indefinite appropriation provides payments to the FSRDF to finance the interest on the unfunded pension liability for the year, Foreign Service Pension System, and disbursements attributable to liability from military service.
Reconciliation of the Combined Statement of Budgetary Resources to the Budget of the United States Government
The reconciliation of the Combined Statement of Budgetary Resources and the actual amounts reported in the Budget of the United States Government (Budget) as of September 30, 2017 is presented in the table below. Since these financial statements are published before the Budget, this reconciliation is based on the FY 2017 Combined Statement of Budgetary Resources because actual amounts for FY 2017 are in the most recently published Budget (i.e., FY 2019). The Budget with actual numbers for September 30, 2018 will be published in the FY 2020 Budget and available in early February 2019. The Department of State’s Budget Appendix includes this information and is available on OMB’s website ( ).
As shown in the table below, Expired Funds are not included in the Budget of the United States. Additionally, the International Assistance Program, included in these financial statements, is reported separately in the Budget of the United States. Other differences represent financial statement adjustments, timing differences, and other immaterial differences between amounts reported in the Department’s Combined SBR and the Budget of the United States.
|Combined Statement of Budgetary Resources (SBR)||$70,971||$43,538||$557||$28,620|
|Distributed Offsetting Receipts||—||—||(557)||557|
|Funds not Reported in the Budget:|
|International Assistance Program||(3,323)||(1,818)||—||(1,539)|
|Undelivered Orders Adjustment||(234)||—||—||—|
|Other and Rounding errors||(10)||(5)||—||3|
|Budget of the United States||$66,495||$41,715||$—||$27,641|
Note 17. Custodial Activity
The Department administers certain custodial activities associated with the collection of non-exchange revenues, which are deposited and recorded directly to the General Fund of the Treasury. The Department does not retain the amounts collected. Accordingly, these amounts are not considered or reported as financial or budgetary resources for the Department. The custodial revenue amounts are considered immaterial and incidental to the Department’s mission. At the end of each fiscal year, the accounts are closed and the balances are brought to zero by Treasury. Specifically, the Department collects interest, penalties and handling fees on accounts receivable; fines, civil penalties and forfeitures; and other miscellaneous receipts. In 2018 and 2017, the Department collected $16 million and $25 million, respectively, in custodial revenues that were transferred to Treasury.
Note 18. Reconciliation of Net Cost of Operations to Budget
The reconciliation of budgetary obligations and nonbudgetary resources available to the reporting entity with its net cost of operations is required by SFFAS No. 7, Accounting for Revenue and Other Financing Sources and Concepts for Reconciling Budgetary and Financial Accounting. Budgetary accounting used to prepare the Statement of Budgetary Resources and proprietary accounting used to prepare the other principal financial statements are complementary, but both types of information about assets, liabilities, net cost of operations and the timing of their recognition are different. The reconciliation of budgetary resources obligated during the current period to the net cost of operations explains the difference between the sources and uses of resources as reported in the budgetary reports and in the net cost of operations. The first section of the reconciliation below presents total resources used in the period to incur obligations. Generally, those resources are appropriations, net of offsetting collections and receipts. The second section adjusts the resources. Some resources are used for items that will be reflected in future net cost. Some are used for assets that are reported on the Balance Sheet, not as net cost. The final section adds or subtracts from total resources those items reported in net cost that do not require or generate resources. As an example, the Department collects regular passport fees that are reported as revenue on the Statement of Net Cost. However, these fees are not shown as a resource because they are returned to Treasury and cannot be obligated or spent by the Department.
|Resources Used to Finance Activities:|
|Budgetary Resources Obligated|
|New Obligations and Upward Adjustments||$43,000||$43,538|
|Spending Authority from Offsetting Collections and Recoveries||(12,686)||(13,402)|
|Total Resources Used to Finance Activities||30,011||29,723|
|Resources Used to Finance Items not Part of Net Cost:|
|Resources Obligated for Future Costs – goods ordered but not yet provided||(380)||(141)|
|Resources that Finance the Acquisition of Assets||(2,293)||(2,934)|
|Resources that Fund Expenses Recognized in Prior Periods||(793)||(620)|
|Total Resources Used to Finance Items not Part of Net Cost||(3,479)||(3,709)|
|Total Resources Used to Finance the Net Cost of Operations||26,532||26,014|
|Components of the Net Cost of Operations that will not require or generate Resources in the Current Period:|
|Increase in Actuarial Liability||1,933||514|
|Passport Fees Reported as Revenue Returned to Treasury General Fund||(645)||(654)|
|Depreciation and Amortization||1,406||1,105|
|Interest Income of Trust Funds||(552)||(564)|
|Total Components of the Net Cost of Operations that will not require or generate Resources in the Current Period||2,207||502|
|Net Cost of Operations||$28,739||$26,516|
Note 19. Fiduciary Activities
The Resolution of the Iraqi Claims deposit fund 19X6038, Libyan Claims deposit fund 19X6224, the Saudi Arabia Claims deposit fund 19X6225, the France Holocaust Deportation Claims deposit fund 19X6226, and the Belgium Pension Claims Settlement deposit fund 19X6227 are presented in accordance with SFFAS No. 31, Accounting for Fiduciary Activities, and OMB Circular A-136, Financial Reporting Requirements, revised. These deposit funds were authorized by claims settlement agreements between the United States of America and the Governments of Iraq, Libya, Saudi Arabia, France, and Belgium. The agreements authorized the Department to collect contributions from donors for the purpose of providing compensation for certain claims within the scope of the agreements, investment of contributions into Treasury securities, and disbursement of contributions received in accordance with the agreements. As specified in the agreements, donors could include governments, institutions, entities, corporations, associations, and individuals. The Department manages these funds in a fiduciary capacity and does not have ownership rights against its contributions and investments; the assets and activities summarized in the schedules below do not appear in the financial statements. The Department’s fiduciary activities are disclosed in this footnote.
|Fiduciary Net Assets, Beginning of Year||$102||$—||$50||$36||$2||$190||$101||$—||$11||$50||$3||$165|
|Disbursements to and on behalf of beneficiaries||—||—||(29)||(5)||(1)||(35)||—||—||(188)||(14)||(1)||(203)|
|Increases/(Decreases) in Fiduciary Net Assets||1||—||19||(4)||(1)||15||1||—||39||(14)||(1)||25|
|Fiduciary Net Assets, End of Year||$103||$—||$69||$32||$1||$205||$102||$—||$50||$36||$2||$190|
|Cash & Cash Equivalents||$103||$—||$69||$1||$1||$174||$102||$—||$50||$4||$1||$157|
|Total Fiduciary Net Assets||$103||$—||$69||$32||$1||$205||$102||$—||$50||$36||$2||$190|