2000 - 2001 Activities

National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting

A major thrust of the Committee continues to be its active support and promotion of the NACSLB's work. Committee members are working actively with the Research and Consulting Center to incorporate NACSLB Recommended Practices into research publications, training programs and the various certification examinations.

Recommended Practice

The Committee developed one recommended practice that was adopted by the Executive Board at its March 2001 meeting.

  • Adoption of Financial Policies: Recommends that, at a minimum, financial policies in the following areas be developed by professional staff and formally adopted by the jurisdiction's governing board as well as the governing boards of those component units; state, provincial and municipal corporations and organizations; and other bodies under their jurisdiction: 1) financial planning policies; 2) revenue policies; and 3) expenditure policies. The jurisdiction's adopted financial policies should be used to frame major policy initiatives and be summarized in the budget document. It is further recommended that these policies, along with any others that may be adopted, be reviewed during the budget process. Professional staff should review the policies to ensure continued relevance and to identify any gaps that should be addressed with new policies. The results of the review should be shared with the governing board during the review of the proposed budget.

Policy Statement

The Committee developed a GFOA policy that was adopted by the Executive Board at its June 2000 meeting.

  • Endorsement of the Public Risk Database Project's Liability Claims Data Standard. GFOA endorsed the standard and urged state and local governments to incorporate the Standard into their risk management information systems and support the development of the PRDP database by sending data in the Standard format to PRDP. Implementation of the Liability Claims Data Standard benefits state and local governments by improving the quantity and quality of information that is necessary to make decisions about risk-financing options, allocate resources to control risk, and assess risk program performance.

Subcommittee Reorganization

The Committee's subcommittees were re-organized at the January 2001 meeting. Three new subcommittees replaced the former Budget Awards, Revenues and Emerging Issues, and Recommended Practices subcommittees: Best Practices and Innovations, Competitive Government, and Performance Measurement. These subcommittees will be temporary in nature, dissolving upon completion of their tasks and then replaced by new entities.

Subcommittee Activities in 2000

Budget Awards Subcommittee

Chair: Cary Tessmann, Waukesha County Technical College, Wisconsin.

  • Proposed language for Criteria #2 that would require effectiveness/outcome measures is included for the required 3-year period for Special Recognition and Outstanding rating consideration.
  • Proposed that all Distinguished Budget Awards criteria be reviewed by the Winter Meeting.
  • Proposed that the Executive Board consider awarding CPE credits for budget reviewers.
  • Asked staff to look at options to recruit more Budget Awards reviewers including discounts for entities providing reviewers and creating a brochure outlining the benefits of being a reviewer.

Recommended Practices Subcommittee

Chair: Sheryl Bailey, City of Hampton, Virginia.

  • Indicated strong support for GFOA conducting on-site, computer-based training seminars for revenue forecasting, capital analysis and operating budget analysis.
  • Asked the Professional Development Center to explore the possibility of developing co-training programs with ICMA.

Revenue and Emerging Issues Subcommittee

Chair: Irwin Bornstein, City of Mission Viejo, California.

  • Analyzed results of emerging issue survey of GFOA members. Survey found that the most critical cluster of issues facing them in the next 2-5 years involved revenue issues, especially potential losses to governmental revenue bases.
  • Proposed that the GFOA explore the possibility of conducting courses on how to finance government in a changing economy and report back by the Winter Meeting.
  • Proposed the Technology Resource Group explore the possibility of creating a listserve.

Subcommittee Activities in 2001

Best Practices and Innovations

Chair: Craig Clifford, City of Scottsdale, Arizona

  • Drafted a recommended practice on the Adoption of Financial Policies (see above). The recommended practice was adopted unanimously by the Committee and forwarded to the Executive Board.
  • Recommended that the GFOA website be enhanced to include resources on best practices and innovations in budgeting.
  • Supported GFOA efforts to provide a list serve/bulletin board capability on the GFOA website
  • Proposed that Budget Awards Program staff consider those budget submissions receiving two or more votes of outstanding on specific criteria for special letter acknowledgement and as candidates for best and innovation source material.
  • Recommended that GFOA expand its efforts to acknowledge all entrants in the Awards for Excellence program and to highlight honorable mentions on the website, in the newsletter or the Government Finance Review.

Competitive Government

Chair: Eric Johnson, Hillsborough County, Florida

  • Drafted language for a proposed recommended practice on Costing Government Services. The draft recommended practice proposed that governments identify and evaluate both direct and indirect costs. The Committee agreed to consider revised language at the June 2001 meeting to permit more time for comment from the CAAFR Committee.
  • Produced an outline of topics the subcommittee wants to see addressed in a potential GFOA training seminar entitled "Assessing Your Readiness for Competitive Government."

Performance Measurement

Chair: Anita Thetford, City of Hurst, Texas

  • Drafted a Performance Measurement Initiative for GFOA that proposed a strategy for actively developing, expanding and promoting the use of performance measurement in a management context in the public sector.

Upcoming Priorities

The Committee will support the work of GFOA in promoting and implementing the new Performance Measurement Initiative. The Committee will continue promoting understanding and implementation of the recommended budget practices developed by the NACSLB. Finally, the Committee will work vigorously to promote the adoption of best practices and encourage innovation by state, provincial and local governments by working with GFOA staff to enhance research and training efforts as well as the GFOA website.

Respectfully submitted,

Ernie Anderson, Chair
Committee on Governmental Budgeting and Management
June 2001