The operating budget is probably a municipality's most important work product. The budget serves a number of functions. At the most basic level it is a legal document that gives city or county officials the authority to incur obligations and pay expenses. It allocates resources among departments, reflecting the legislative body's priorities and policies and controls how much each department may spend. In most jurisdictions, the budget has evolved from just being a bunch of numbers. Budgets often include mission statements, goals, and objectives that convey to the citizens the vision for the future of the municipality's elected officials and let the officials communicate why they have allocated the scarce resources in the manner that they did. A budget can also be an evaluation tool, comparing commitments made in the previous year's budget with actual accomplishments.
- Anatomy of a Priority-Based Budget Process, by Shayne C. Kavanagh, Jon Johnson, and Chris Fabian, Government Finance Officers Association, March 2011. Kavanaugh et al. expand on the model of Osborne and Hutchison in "Budgeting for Outcomes", using examples from cities and counties they have worked with, including Snohomish County. Redmond has also worked with GFOA in developing its "Budgeting by Priorities" process.
- Biennial Budgeting - MRSC webpage
- Budget Calendar Conundrum: The Proposed Preliminary Budget Must Be Given to the Council No Later Than the First Monday in October - Excerpt from Budget Suggestions for 2013
- Budget Suggestions for 2015 (, July 2014
- Budgeting for Category 2 Cities and Towns, Section E from Small Cities Handbook, Washington State Auditor 09/2006
- Budgeting for Cities and Towns in Washington State, developed by (at the time) Renton Finance Director Michael Bailey (now Redmond), and Tumwater Finance Director Gayla Gjertsen (retired) for the Association of Washington Cities (AWC) and the Washington Finance Officers Association (WFOA), 07/2002
- "Budgeting for Outcomes : Delivering Results Citizens Value at a Price They Are Willing to Pay," by David Osborne and Peter Hutchinson. Governing Finance Review, October 2004. This article provides a summary of their book, The Price of Government: Getting the Results We Need in an Age of Permanent Fiscal Crisis (Available through MRSC Library Loan)
- Budgets - MRSC Inquiries (Ask MRSC)
- Government Finance Officers Association Budget Award Winners for 2012
- Report of the King County General Government Budget Advisory Task Force, 06/23/2003. The mission of the task force was to examine the county's current expense (CX) fund, programs, policies, processes and budgets, and make recommendations regarding policy and operational changes that may provide appropriate additional cost savings, as well as the need, if any, for additional revenues in support of CX programs.
- Salary Increases for Elected Officials and the Consumer Price Index - State Auditor's Office Bulletin 1999-01
- Shortchanged: King County's Fiscal Crisis - A report by the Municipal League of King County, November 13, 2003. The purpose of this report is to identify key issues affecting King County's fiscal health and to make recommendations to improve it.
- Zero-Based Budgeting: Modern Experiences and Current Perspectives, by Shayne C. Kavanagh; sponsored by the Government Finance Officers
Association and the City of Calgary, Alberta, 2011
Links to Budgets
MRSC Library Resources - Clicking on one of the links below will take you to a list of documents available on loan through the MRSC library