Budgeting - Case Study
ESCOT recently helped one city make a major change to their budget system. Up to now, the city had followed a common arrangement for New York cities—the Mayor, the Treasurer and the Common Council operated on the budget independently and in serial fashion. The new system placed responsibility for proposing and implementing the annual budget in a budget committee that included representatives of the three governing functions. The change was neither easy nor quick. In the third year of implementation, improvements are still being made.
The reasons for undertaking such a change are really twofold. The state
laws for implementing budgets are getting ever more complex. Also,
state and federal agencies that offer monetary grants each operate with
their own unique rules and regulations. Managing these diverse
requirements is a real challenge for many smaller and midsize cities. To
complicate the matter, budgets must be put together under short time
constraints and with incomplete information.
The changeover required amending local laws and procedures. The Budget Committee itself constituted a new organization within the city and had to work out a place for itself. However advantages were evident from the start. Budget requests arising from the operating departments were made available to all reviewers at one time. Having the three offices work together in assembling the budget insured that the best knowledge of city officials about priorities and problems could be introduced early in the process. Also, new developments and problems continue to develop during the year so the committee continues to meet to help address new issues and to provide guidance about budget intent.
What our clients say:
"After a fire destroyed our agency, ESCOT was instrumental in helping the Albany Damien Center to get a volunteer experienced in Real Estate to assist us with determining our space needs. ESCOT was very quick in responding to our requests for help and I would highly recommend their services to any agency looking for highly motivated and skilled volunteers."
— Perry Junjulas, Executive Director, The Albany Damien Center
“ESCOT allowed our agency access to services such as designing a strategic plan … that had been otherwise unattainable due to budgetary restrictions. The project managers assigned to our agency were incredibly knowledgeable and professional.”
— Megan Quillan, Executive Director, Mechanicville Area Community Services Center
"The ESCOT team was very reliable and dependable, invested themselves in the process, and learned from us, as we learned from them. The final product is outstanding and we couldn’t have done it on our own.”
— Denise Ringer, President, Board of Directors, Mohawk & Hudson River Humane Society
"We’ve employed ESCOT a half dozen times over the last five years. They’ve completed program evaluations, as well as finance, personnel and purchasing projects—all done by experienced consultants at a price everyone could afford. We recommend them to all!"
— Dan Dwyer, Mayor, City of Rensselaer
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