The GASB defines infrastructure as long-lived capital assets associated with governmental activities that normally are stationary in nature and can be preserved for a significantly greater number of years than most capital assets. Examples of infrastructure are bridges, roads, dams, and lighting systems.
Buildings usually are excluded from the definition of infrastructure assets unless they are an ancillary part of a network of infrastructure (i.e. a pump-house on a dam). Most small- and medium-size Tennessee counties will typically have at least two main types of infrastructure to capitalize, county-owned roads and bridges.
Except for counties with less then $10 million of total revenue in fiscal year ended June 30, 1999, all Tennessee counties must capitalize all major infrastructure on a retroactive basis. While the GASB encourages all counties, regardless of size, to retroactively capitalize infrastructure, counties under the $10 million threshold are allowed to capitalize infrastructure on a prospective basis (i.e. just new additions of infrastructure beginning with the year of Statement 34 implementation). When it issued Statement 34, the GASB set forth deadlines for local governments to retroactively report assets. While the GASB encouraged early implementation, Tennessee counties with more than $10 million but less then $100 million in total revenue in the first fiscal year ending after June 15, 1999, were supposed to capitalize all major infrastructure retroactively no later then June 30, 2007. Counties with less then $10 million in total revenue are encouraged, but not required, to retroactively capitalize infrastructure assets.
GASB Statement 34 requires counties to capitalize and report all county-owned infrastructure that exceed capitalization thresholds, at historical or estimated historical cost. The GASB recognized the challenge to determine an accurate historical cost in counties that are required to retroactively report assets. Therefore, counties are required to capitalize and report only major general infrastructure assets that were acquired (purchased, constructed, or donated) in fiscal years ending after June 30, 1980, or that received major renovations, restorations, or improvements during that period.