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The current rules of the board specify numbers of semester hours that an
applicant for a CPA certificate must have completed, including at least 24 semester
hours in accounting at the undergraduate level or 15 semester hours at the graduate
level, including at least one course in each of six specified subjects, and at least 24
semester hours in business courses other than accounting courses at the
undergraduate or graduate level, including at least one course in each of six specified
subjects.
This bill modifies the rules of the board specifying these semester hours and
course subjects required in order to be granted a CPA certificate or to take the CPA
examination, as follows:
1. The bill specifies methods for satisfying the 150 hours requirement for
obtaining a CPA certificate. The methods differ depending on the degree received by
the applicant and how the educational program, department, or educational
institution from which the applicant earned the degree is accredited.
2. The bill provides that a person may satisfy the 120 hours requirement for
taking the CPA examination if the person already satisfies the 150 hours
requirement for obtaining a CPA certificate described above, the person otherwise
satisfies the course content and semester hours required for a CPA certificate, or the
person has completed course work that the board determines is reasonably
equivalent to those requirements.
The bill also allows the board to promulgate rules to allow for certain military
service to count toward the 150 hours requirement.
Additionally, the bill requires the board to promulgate rules establishing
continuing education requirements for the renewal of licenses held by individuals to
practice as certified public accountants. The bill provides that the board may not
require an individual to complete more than 80 continuing education credits during
the two-year period between license renewal dates. For continuing education credits
earned based on the amount of time spent participating in an activity, one credit is
earned for every 50 minutes engaged in an eligible activity. The bill allows up to
one-half of the amount of continuing education credits required by the board by rule
to be completed by various informal, self-directed learning activities. Under the bill,
the earliest license renewal date for which individuals are subject to the continuing
education requirements is December 15, 2021. Under current law, continuing
education is not required for the renewal of certified public accountant licenses held
by individuals.
Current law requires a CPA firm, as a condition of renewal of its license, to
undergo a peer review at least once every three years. Current law provides that a
person approved by the board to conduct peer reviews may not disclose any
information obtained or document produced during the course of or as a result of a
peer review unless the firm undergoing the review consents to the disclosure. The
bill allows the board to require an individual CPA or a CPA firm to provide certain

peer review documents to the board, and allows a CPA or firm to comply with such
a directive by submitting the requested documents to the board or by allowing the
peer review program administrator to make the documents available to the board
through the Facilitated State Board Access program operated by the American
Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FSBA). In addition, the bill allows the
board to make documents submitted to the board available to the FSBA and provides
that information or data obtained by the board through the FSBA is not subject to
disclosure under the public records law, except as the board otherwise provides by
rule.
Finally, the bill requires the board to participate in data-sharing programs
operated or otherwise sponsored by the National Association of State Boards of
Accountancy and to share information or data regarding current or former licensees
as needed in order to participate in those programs. The bill provides that
information or data obtained by the board through such a program is not subject to
disclosure under the public records law, except as the board otherwise provides by
rule.
For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB188,1 1Section 1. 442.01 (4) of the statutes is created to read:
AB188,3,82 442.01 (4) The examining board shall participate in data-sharing programs
3operated or otherwise sponsored by the National Association of State Boards of
4Accountancy and shall share information or data regarding persons currently or
5previously licensed under this chapter as needed in order to participate in those
6programs. Except as otherwise provided by the examining board by rule,
7information or data obtained by the board through such a program is not subject to
8the right of inspection and copying under s. 19.35 (1).
AB188,2 9Section 2. 442.04 (5) (b) 3. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB188,4,210 442.04 (5) (b) 3. The person has, except as provided in sub. (6), completed at
11least 150 semester hours of education at an institution that include course work in

1accounting and business subjects, as determined by the examining board, and has
2received a bachelor's or higher degree.
AB188,3 3Section 3. 442.04 (6) of the statutes is created to read:
AB188,4,64 442.04 (6) The examining board may promulgate rules pursuant to which the
5examining board may, in its discretion and on a case-by-case basis, do all of the
6following:
AB188,4,97 (a) Consider certain military training and service of a veteran, as defined in s.
845.01 (12), who was honorably discharged to be substantially equivalent to semester
9hours of education completed at an institution.
AB188,4,1110 (b) Apply training and service described in par. (a) to satisfy a portion of the 150
11semester hours required under sub. (5) (b) 3.
AB188,4 12Section 4. 442.083 (title) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB188,4,13 13442.083 (title) Renewal; continuing education.
AB188,5 14Section 5. 442.083 of the statutes is renumbered 442.083 (1).
AB188,6 15Section 6. 442.083 (2) of the statutes is created to read:
AB188,4,2116 442.083 (2) (a) The examining board shall promulgate rules establishing
17continuing education requirements for renewal of licenses granted to individuals
18under this chapter. The rules promulgated under this paragraph may not require
19an individual to complete more than 80 continuing education credits during the
202-year period immediately preceding the renewal date specified under s. 440.08 (2)
21(a).
AB188,4,2522 (b) For continuing education credits that are earned based on the amount of
23time spent participating in an eligible learning activity, one credit shall be earned
24for every 50 minutes spent engaging in the eligible activity. One-tenth of a credit
25may be earned for every 5 minutes spent participating in an eligible activity.
AB188,5,6
1(c) Up to one-half of the amount of continuing education credits required by
2rule under par. (a) may be completed by informal, self-directed learning activities,
3including reading, teaching, researching, serving on a board or committee, viewing
4a video, listening to an audio recording, or participating in other experiential
5learning activities that are determined by the board to be relevant to competency to
6practice as a certified public accountant.
AB188,7 7Section 7. 442.087 (4) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB188,5,128 442.087 (4) Confidentiality. A Except as provided in sub. (5), a person
9approved by the examining board to conduct peer reviews may not disclose to any
10person, including the examining board or the department, any information obtained
11or document produced during the course of or as a result of a review unless the firm
12undergoing the review consents to the disclosure.
AB188,8 13Section 8. 442.087 (5) of the statutes is created to read:
AB188,5,1614 442.087 (5) Peer review documents. (a) The examining board may require a
15certified public accountant or firm to provide any of the following peer review
16documents to the examining board:
AB188,5,1717 1. A peer review report.
AB188,5,1818 2. Any letter of response to a peer review report.
AB188,5,1919 3. An acceptance letter.
AB188,5,2120 4. A letter signed by the reviewed firm accepting the peer review documents
21with the understanding that the firm agrees to take certain actions.
AB188,5,2322 5. A letter notifying the reviewed firm that certain required actions have been
23completed.
AB188,5,2524 (b) A certified public accountant or firm may comply with a directive under par.
25(a) by doing any of the following within 45 days after the date of the directive:
AB188,6,2
11. Submitting the requested documents to the examining board, either by mail
2or electronically.
AB188,6,53 2. Allowing the peer review program administrator to make the documents
4available to the examining board through the Facilitated State Board Access
5program operated by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
AB188,6,86 (c) The examining board may make documents submitted to the examining
7board under par. (b) 1. available to the Facilitated State Board Access program
8operated by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
AB188,6,119 (d) Except as otherwise provided by the examining board by rule, information
10or data obtained by the board through the Facilitated State Board Access program
11is not subject to the right of inspection and copying under s. 19.35 (1).
AB188,9 12Section 9. Accy 2.002 (intro.) of the administrative code is amended to read:
AB188,6,14 13Accy 2.002 Definitions. (intro.) In this chapter, except where a different
14meaning is indicated
:
AB188,10 15Section 10. Accy 2.101 (2) of the administrative code is repealed and recreated
16to read:
AB188,6,1817 Accy 2.101 (2) Proof of fulfilling the educational requirements specified in s.
18Accy 2.202 and s. 442.04 (5) (b) 3., Stats., by submitting one of the following:
AB188,6,2019 (a) For a candidate who qualifies under s. Accy 2.202 (1), proof that the
20candidate earned a master's degree specified under s. Accy 2.202 (1).
AB188,6,2421 (b) For a candidate who qualifies under s. Accy 2.202 (2), (3), or (4), certified
22copies of transcripts for all academic work completed at an accredited educational
23institution that reflect that the candidate has satisfied the requirement under s.
24Accy 2.202 (2), (3), or (4), whichever is applicable.
AB188,7,3
1(c) For a candidate who qualifies under s. Accy 2.202 (5), certified copies of
2transcripts for all academic work leading to a bachelor's or higher degree in
3accounting meeting the coursework requirement described in s. Accy 2.202 (5).
AB188,11 4Section 11. Accy 2.202 of the administrative code is repealed and recreated to
5read:
AB188,7,10 6Accy 2.202 Education required for certification. A candidate applying for
7a certificate to practice as a certified public accountant must have earned a bachelor's
8or higher degree from an accredited educational institution and have satisfied one
9of the following for purposes of meeting the 150-hour coursework requirement under
10s. 442.04 (5) (b) 3., Stats.:
AB188,7,12 11(1) Earned a master's degree in accounting from an accounting program or
12department accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
AB188,7,19 13(2) Earned a bachelor's or higher degree from a business program or college of
14business accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the
15International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, or the Accreditation
16Council for Business Schools and Programs, and completed at least 24 semester
17hours in accounting from an accredited educational institution at the undergraduate
18level or 15 semester hours at the graduate level, or an equivalent combination, that
19cover each of the following subject areas:
AB188,7,2020 (a) Financial accounting.
AB188,7,2121 (b) Cost or managerial accounting.
AB188,7,2222 (c) Taxation.
AB188,7,2323 (d) Auditing.
AB188,7,2424 (e) Accounting information systems.
AB188,8,2
1(3) Earned a bachelor's or higher degree from an accredited educational
2institution and completed all of the following:
AB188,8,53 (a) At least 24 semester hours in accounting from an accredited educational
4institution at the undergraduate level or 15 semester hours at the graduate level, or
5an equivalent combination, that cover each of the following subject areas:
AB188,8,66 1. Financial accounting.
AB188,8,77 2. Cost or managerial accounting.
AB188,8,88 3. Taxation.
AB188,8,99 4. Auditing.
AB188,8,1010 5. Accounting information systems.
AB188,8,1411 (b) At least 24 semester hours in business and economics courses other than
12accounting courses from an accredited educational institution at the undergraduate
13level or 15 semester hours at the graduate level, or an equivalent combination, that
14cover each of the following subject areas:
AB188,8,1515 1. Economics.
AB188,8,1616 2. Finance.
AB188,8,1717 3. Statistics or data analytics.
AB188,8,1818 4. Business law.
AB188,8,1919 5. Information technology.
AB188,8,23 20Note: The courses covering the subjects of financial accounting, cost or
21managerial accounting, taxation, and auditing under s. Accy 2.202 (2) or (3), would
22generally be courses taken beyond the introduction accounting course required of
23every business major.
AB188,9,3
1(4) Completed coursework that the board determines is reasonably equivalent
2to the course content and semester hours requirements specified in sub. (3) (a) and
3(b).
AB188,9,6 4(5) Satisfied the 150-hour coursework requirement as provided in emergency
5rule 1628. This subsection applies only to a candidate who submitted his or her
6application for a certified public accountant certificate prior to October 1, 2018.
AB188,12 7Section 12. Accy 2.303 of the administrative code is repealed and recreated
8to read:
AB188,9,12 9Accy 2.303 Education required for examination. A candidate for the
10certified public accountant examination must have satisfied one of the following for
11purposes of meeting the 120-hour coursework requirement under s. 442.04 (5) (b) 4.,
12Stats.:
AB188,9,13 13(1) Satisfied s. Accy 2.202 (1), (2), or (3).
AB188,9,16 14(2) Satisfied the course content and semester hours requirements specified in
15s. Accy 2.202 (3) (a) and (b), or completed coursework that the board determines is
16reasonably equivalent to those requirements.
AB188,9,20 17(3) Satisfied the 120-hour coursework requirement as provided in emergency
18rule 1628. This subsection applies only to a candidate who submitted an application
19to take the certified public accountant examination under s. Accy 2.302 prior to
20October 1, 2017.
AB188,13 21Section 13 . Nonstatutory provisions.
AB188,9,24 22(1) Notwithstanding section 227.24 (1) (c) and (2) of the statutes, emergency
23rule 1628 of the accounting examining board shall expire on the effective date of this
24subsection.
AB188,14 25Section 14 . Initial applicability.
AB188,10,3
1(1) The treatment of sections Accy 2.101 (2), Accy 2.202, and Accy 2.303 of the
2Wisconsin Administrative Code first applies to an application for a certificate as a
3certified public accountant submitted on the effective date of this subsection.
AB188,15 4Section 15 . Effective dates. This act takes effect on the day after publication,
5except as follows:
AB188,10,86 (1) The treatment of section 442.083 (title) of the statutes, the renumbering of
7section 442.083 of the statutes, and the creation of section 442.083 (2) of the statutes
8take effect on December 15, 2019.
AB188,10,109 (2) Notwithstanding section 227.265 of the statutes, the repeal and
10modifications of administrative rules take effect on June 1, 2017.
AB188,10,1111 (3) Sections 13 (1 ) and 14 (1) of this act take effect on June 1, 2017.
AB188,10,1212 (End)
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