Thursday, August 27, 2015

Richardson's Budget - Black or Red?

It's August and that means it's time for Richardson budget roulette. Will the proposed city budget be balanced? You'd think that would be a simple question. Isn't the city required by law to have a balanced budget? Well, yes, but it all depends on the meaning of "balanced".

Last year when I looked at this question, I concluded that the city's 2014-2015 budget was indeed balanced and didn't require use of that sneaky asterisk ("plus reserved fund balance and other financing sources").

After the jump, reviewing that conclusion and looking ahead at 2015-2016.

Last year's proposed budget forecast an ending fund balance of $42,433,114. This year's proposed budget shows a beginning fund balance of $46,793,918. It looks like we didn't have to draw down any fund balances to keep the overall budget in balance. So far, so good.

Now let's look at the 2015-2016 proposed budget.

Budget FY 2015-16
Beginning Fund Balances$46,793,918
Operating Revenues$233,749,542
Operating Expenditures$232,217,969
Ending Fund Balances$48,325,491

Once again, the ending fund balance is greater than the beginning balance. That means the budget is balanced without needing to draw down the fund balances. That means the budget is squarely in the black without reliance on any sneaky asterisks. Ta-da! Woohoo! WE DID IT!

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