Budgeting the NACSLB Way

By Kinney, Anne Spray | Government Finance Review, December 2006 | Go to article overview
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Budgeting the NACSLB Way


Kinney, Anne Spray, Government Finance Review


The National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting firmly established the concept that budgeting is much more than an annual funding allocation process. NACSLB provided four guiding principles for placing budgeting within an integrated, strategic framework of planning, goal setting, budgetary appropriations, performance measurement and management, and evaluation of results. This issue of Government Finance Review is dedicated to supporting governments that have or are in the process of shifting to a NACSLB approach to budgeting.

One frustration budget managers have faced in the past is the dearth of technology applications that support a strategic approach. Most automated budget systems of the past were little more than spreadsheets that could be uploaded to the accounting system when the budget was adopted. Is there technology on the horizon that can support performance measurement and analysis and that can be used across distinctly different budgeting practices? Shayne Kavanagh and John Ruggini investigate the possibilities in their article on corporate performance management software.

The traditional budget process is inherently tactical and short-term in nature. Governments need budgeting approaches that help them to plan for the long-term futures of their communities. The process of long-term financial planning provides a tool. Len Brittain describes the City of Toronto's process it used to develop a leading-edge Long-Term Fiscal Plan.

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