Title:  Principal Financial Accountant

Department:  Financial & External Reporting

Sacramento, CA, US, 95817-1899

Category:  Accounting/Financial

Minimum Pay Rate: $111,092.80 

Maximum Pay Rate: $147,201.60 

Posting Type: Open 


This posting has been reopened.  If you have previously applied to this hiring process, you will not need to reapply.  This posting will remain open until a sufficient quantity of qualified applicants are received by may close at any time without notice after 4/17/2024.  Applicants are encouraged to apply early. 
This posting intends to fill one (1) regular full-time vacancy AND establish an eligibility list that may be used to fill future vacancies for up to two (2) years.

This position will supervise and administer the month-end and year-end closing activities of SMUD’s consolidated financial statements.  This includes performing and overseeing the SAP closing process including setting up new general ledger accounts and orders and mapping to the SAP reports as needed.  Responsibilities will also include:

  • Overseeing the preparation of SMUD’s consolidated financial statements in accordance with SMUD standards, GAAP, FERC and GASB guidelines
  • Analysis of the financial statement variances
  • Preparation and review of the monthly executive summary to the Board of Directors
  • Implementation of new Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB)  pronouncements and accounting research, with assistance from the Assistant Controller and support from the Senior Accountant
  • Assisting with the preparation and review of the year-end audited financial statements, audit schedules and coordination with our external auditors
  • Overseeing the response to various financial surveys throughout the year, reviewing the monthly and quarterly utility user tax returns, and the preparation of the annual non-cash budget


This position supervises a Senior Accountant and a shared Accountant, and reports to the Manager and Assistant Controller for Financial and External Reporting.  


To supervise and administer the day-to-day activities and operations of the SMUDs financial accounting section to ensure the timely and accurate provision of accounting records and disclosure statements in compliance with the SMUDs guidelines and applicable laws and regulations and to provide SMUD with data for making informed management decisions.

Nature and Scope

Serves as a technical or functional expert or consultant providing expertise and/or direction in one or more areas of a professional discipline and assumes responsibility for resolving complex problems and overseeing complex projects. May also serve in a Lead role and assist in planning, coordinating, prioritizing, monitoring and evaluating the work results in assigned area and in selecting, training, motivating, evaluating and developing lower-level personnel.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Plans, coordinates, prioritizes, monitors, and guides work activities with work-unit employees to meet established task objectives and deadlines by following established policies and precedents; communicating with team members and incorporating their input to processes and techniques; providing staff training; promoting staff safety and a safe work environment; assisting in selecting and orienting new personnel; assisting in evaluating work performance results; participating as a team member in accomplishing objectives; and referring problems to supervision where solutions are not readily achievable. To provide leadership and participate in assigned tasks of a work unit in order to meet defined unit goals and schedules and comply with SMUD schedule, quality, quantity, safety and performance standards.
  • Supervises the general accounting unit by overseeing the proper reporting of revenues, expenses, receivables and payables; guiding the analyses and resolution of accounting problems and discrepancies; overseeing the preparation of disclosure statements and other financial accounting documents; and overseeing the preparation of SMUDs General Ledger and Annual Report in accordance with SMUD standards and GAAP, FERC, GASB and FASB guidelines. To ensure the accurate recording and reporting of general accounting and financial data and the provision of relevant analyses for management decision-making.
  • Supervises the analyses and reporting of financial data, including monthly power statistics related to the SMUDs energy purchases, generation and sales; investment and commercial paper transactions; and cash flow projections. To provide management and the Board of Directors with relevant financial information for management decision-making.
  • Oversees the preparation of financial accounting analyses and reports for various external agencies, the Joint Power Agency boards (COTP, TANC, BANC) and other external bodies. To meet legal and regulatory requirements for financial disclosure and reporting.
  • Assists in administering the department budget by participating in planning, monitoring and revising schedules, work plans, expenditures and assignments. To support the achievement of unit objectives in a fiscally responsible manner.
  • Plans, coordinates, prioritizes, monitors, guides, reviews and conducts work activities associated with department internal/external projects in accordance with established task objectives and schedule as outlined in the project plan/contract. To ensure assigned work activities successfully contribute to the overall completion of department projects.
  • Performs related duties as required.

Required Education

  • BS/BA degree from an accredited college or university majoring in Accounting, Finance or other closely related field 

Required Experience Qualifications

Seven (7+) or more years of progressively responsible financial accounting experience including three (3+) or more years of lead or supervisory responsibility.

Knowledge Of

Advanced principles and practices of public agency financial management including general and governmental accounting, budgeting, auditing, and reporting functions as well as GAAP, GASB and FASB guidelines; advanced principles, systems and concepts related to Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) accounting; SMUD accounting systems (SAP) and procedures, both manual and automated; procedures and practices related to business law, Internal Revenue Code and Treasury Regulations; advanced principles and practices of automated financial systems; federal, state and local laws, codes and regulations related to accounting, financial reporting and rate regulation issues; principles of budget preparation and control; principles of supervision, training, and performance evaluation; principles and procedures of record keeping; principles of business letter writing and report preparation; techniques and concepts related to team management; characteristics and operational needs of various organizational units; interrelationships between SMUD’s operations and relevant external entities; procedures and practices for monitoring and managing projects; office procedures, methods, and equipment including computers and applicable software applications such as word processing, spreadsheets, and databases; English usage, spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

Skills To

Oversee and review the work of staff; independently perform the most difficult professional accounting assignments; examine and verify financial documents, reports, and transactions; prepare a variety of complex budgets, financial statements, reports, and analyses in conformance with GAAP and established policies and procedures; analyze, post, balance, and reconcile financial data, ledgers, and accounts; analyze and interpret complex financial data and recognize accounts that need detailed investigation; interpret and analyze electronic, technical accounting and tax data; perform complex mathematical calculations; analyze relevant legislation and develop related policies and procedures; access and use accounting and legal research materials; understand the organization and operation of SMUD and of outside agencies as necessary to assume assigned responsibilities; understand, interpret, and apply general and specific administrative and departmental policies and procedures as well as applicable federal, state, and local policies, laws, and regulations; participate in the preparation and administration of complex budgets; prepare clear and concise reports; manage multiple projects simultaneously and be sensitive to changing priorities and deadlines; plan and organize work to meet changing priorities and deadlines; coordinate the work of the function or unit with other SMUD entities; develop and implement new and revised policies and procedures to provide for the effective operation of the area of responsibility; operate office equipment including computers and supporting word processing, spreadsheet, and database applications; communicate effectively orally and in writing internally/externally; establish and maintain effective working relationships internally/externally.

Desirable Qualifications

  • Active CPA License
  • Two or more (2+) years of experience in the implementation of new FASB or GASB pronouncements   
  • Two or more (2+) years of experience in researching accounting technical issues and proper reporting under GAAP and FASB or GASB 

Physical Requirements

Applicants must be able to perform the essential job functions with or without a reasonable accommodation.

Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) - Who We Are

As the nation's sixth-largest community-owned electric service provider, we're proud of our reputation as one of the best places to work in Sacramento. Our employees tell us in our engagement surveys they're "Happy, satisfied and engaged" which helps create a workplace that best serves our customers. Sacramento was named as the 2nd happiest place to work in America by Forbes Magazine. Lake Tahoe, San Francisco and the world-renowned Napa Valley are within easy driving distance of our locations.


Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion

SMUD celebrates diversity, and inspires an inclusive culture based on trust and respect to create belonging and connection among our employees, customers, and communities. By working together, we are powering positive, equitable opportunities for all. We aspire to be a workplace where you can be yourself, achieve your best, and thrive together. 


An example of our commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging is when SMUD signed the California Equal Pay Pledge in 2020. This requires equal pay for employees who perform “substantially similar work,” when viewed as a composite of skill, effort, and responsibility at the time those employees started within that classification.  As such, initial hiring salary range is not subject to negotiation and salaries will vary over time based on performance.


SMUD is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate in employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, gender (including pregnancy), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, veteran status, or any other applicable legally protected characteristic. All employment decisions are made on the basis of individual qualifications, merit, and business needs and interests.

Why Sacramento, California?

The capitol of California, Sacramento is the state's sixth-largest city, and the 35th largest in the U.S. Local universities include California State University, University of the Pacific's McGeorge School of Law, and the University of California, Davis and several competitive community colleges. The UC Davis Medical Center, a world-renowned research hospital, is one of more than a dozen hospitals and shared services centers in the Sacramento region. Part of the agriculturally-rich Central Valley, Sacramento is at the forefront of the farm-to-fork food movement. Northern California is home to some of the country's top technology companies, including Google and LinkedIn, and a multitude of startups in many industries. Sacramento is home to the NBA Kings, the River Cats (AAA baseball), the Republic FC (soccer) and the San Francisco Giants, NBA Warriors and NFL 49er's aren't far away. Sacramento offers an affluent liberal arts community with Broadway, Mondavi Center, Crocker Museum and summer musical theater to name a few.


Hybrid Work

This role will be a hybrid role that will require being in person at one of SMUD's campuses on a regular basis to complete work tasks.

SMUD provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, amnesty, or status as a covered veteran in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws. SMUD complies with applicable state and local laws governing non-discrimination in employment in every location in which the company has facilities. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including, but not limited to, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training.

SMUD expressly prohibits any form of unlawful employee harassment based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, age, genetic information, disability, or veteran status. Improper interference with the ability of SMUD employees to perform their expected job duties is absolutely not tolerated.

Req ID:  1164