What is Budget Assessment?

Annually, municipalities formally adopt their budgets by vote of their elected officials. The process begins at different intervals and largely depends on an ordinance or home rule charter. The budget is an extremely important document and allows for administrators to operate the locality with proper guidance. Far too often, hearings often result in countless hours of deliberation on figures that are scrutinized at a single point in the fiscal year, rather than being spread out in shorter, more frequent review sessions.

Line Chart Graph Budgeting

Municipalities have two types of budgeting methodologies to choose from: incremental or zero-based budgeting. Incremental budgeting takes into consideration the previous year’s budget and includes percentages of increases and decreases for revenues and expenses.  Zero-based budgeting is the process in which all figures are zeroed out and the budget is formulated based on justifying both revenues and expenses for the municipality. Both are valid and have their advantages/disadvantages.

In either scenario, the process to vote and adopt a budget can be a grueling experience.  Presentations, spreadsheets, and the time spent reviewing figures is daunting but necessary to assess the accuracy of your budget. Luckily, there is a better way to receive and process this information.

How Polity Contributes as Budget Assessment Consultants

Polity is one of the top budget assessment organizations and can handle your full workload on your behalf. Using our proprietary system of data analytics combined with dashboards to help visualize the hundreds of printed pages, we simplify the process to adopt a budget. Transmitting your data to Polity will enable our experts to create an appealing, securely hosted environment where you can visualize where and how your budget will be allocated. Best of all, we host this in our own system completely independent of your internal systems, allowing for a greater degree of security.

Visual Data

Another important benefit of Polity is our ability to process your data and present it for public viewing – allowing users to interact directly with the data. Selecting a month or a given department can precisely pinpoint troubled areas within your budget that require further attention. The more data we have access to, the better we can visualize that information for trends and forecasting. In an ideal situation, having three years of budget data is highly recommended to help with planning for the future of your municipality.

Polity is your key to helping with the overall assessment of your budget. We strive to utilize your data to help analyze each department and ensure you are adequately funded in your operations and future services. Without a fundamental budget analysis of your municipality, there could be long-lasting deficits that go unremedied.

For more information or a free 15-minute consultation, please visit our contact page and we can schedule time to help you move your municipality forward.