The budget is a plan. It is a financial proposal that annually directs the provision of public services and facilities. Once finalized and adopted, this plan represents the City Manager's and City Council's commitment to provide for the most important citizen needs within the boundaries of available revenue (funds).
The money collected by the city from taxes, grants, fees, and many other sources to pay for this plan is called revenue. The money spent on salaries, materials, and equipment to provide these planned services and facilities is called appropriations (planned expenditures). By city law, revenues and expenditures must be equal in the annual budget. This is what is meant by a balanced budget.
How Are Spending Decisions Made?
The annual budget is put forth by the City Manager with extensive input from city staff. A series of budget workshops allow City Council time to discuss and consider the budget in detail and put forth any suggested changes. Council must approve a final budget before the new fiscal year begins on July 1 each year.