The budget development process is the formal method through which the City establishes its program priorities, goals and service levels for the upcoming fiscal year. This page offers access to (1) FY 21-22 budget written reports and presentations, (2) community budget meetings and opportunities for stakeholder engagement, and (3) information on Richmond’s American Rescue Plan allocation. Feel free to contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or comments.
Community Budget Meetings
Members of the community, you are invited to attend the City of Richmond’s Community Budget Meeting hosted by the Finance Department. Come learn about the city’s budget process, an overview of the City’s finances, and how the American Rescue Plan impacts our city’s finances. City staff will be available for questions, and Spanish translation will be provided. You can access the meeting using the following link:
A budget is simply an annual financial plan that lists the anticipated revenues and how the City anticipates on spending them.
How is the budget developed?
The City adopts a budget annually to be effective July 1, for the ensuing fiscal year. The budgets are adopted on a basis substantially consistent with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). Budgeted expenditures are adopted through the passage of a resolution. This resolution constitutes the maximum authorized expenditures for the fiscal year and cannot legally be exceeded except by subsequent amendments of the budget by the City Council.
The City uses an encumbrance system as an extension of normal budgetary accounting for the General Fund, special revenue funds, and capital projects funds. Under this system, purchase orders, contracts, and other commitments for the expenditure of monies are recorded in order to reserve that portion of applicable appropriations. Encumbrances outstanding at year-end are recorded as reservations of fund balance since they do not constitute expenditures or liabilities. Outstanding encumbrances at year-end are automatically re-appropriated for the following year. Unencumbered and unexpended appropriations lapse at year-end.
An operating budget is adopted each fiscal year for the General Fund and certain special revenue funds. Public hearings are conducted on the proposed budgets to review all appropriations and sources of financing. Capital projects funds are budgeted by the Mayor and City Council over the term of the individual projects. Since capital projects are not budgeted on an annual basis, they are not included in the budgetary data. Debt service funds are not budgeted.
Expenditures are controlled at the fund level for all budgeted departments within the City. This is the level at which expenditures may not legally exceed appropriations.
Any amendments or transfers of appropriations between object group levels within the same department must be authorized by the City Manager. Any amendments to the total level appropriations for a fund or transfers between funds must be approved by the City Council. Supplemental appropriations financed by unanticipated revenues during the year must be approved by the City Council.
What is the City’s Fiscal Year?
Richmond’s finances are accounted for on a fiscal year rather than a calendar year basis. That means instead of starting business each year from January 1, through December 31, we begin July 1, through June 30. One can also interchange budget year with fiscal year.
What are funds?
Funds are another way we refer to a certain supply of monies. Richmond receives funding from different revenue sources. Many of these funds or revenues come with restrictions on how we spend them, and on what we spend them on. Some fund types are the General Fund, Special Revenue Fund, and Capital Project Funds.
American Rescue Plan Act
Through the passage of H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), state, tribal and local governments are expected to receive billions in much needed assistance to help offset the negative impacts of COVID-19.
Richmond is currently situated to receive $20.81 million.
It is anticipated that funds will be received in 2 equal installments one year apart. The first allocation is expected to come around June or July 2021, with the final installment expected one year later in 2022. All funds must be spent by the end of calendar year 2024.