The cut throat competition in the current business world has forced government and non government agencies to adopt budgets as a technique of ensuring that the scarce resources at their exposure are well utilized. A good budget entails a list of all sources of revenue that a business or the government has and how it will be allocated to finance the expenses expected. In this regard, the importance of a budget cannot be out looked since it is one of the aspects that make it possible for institutions to achieve their objectives. There are various types of budget these include government budget, business start up budget, corporate budget and event management budget. This paper will intensively explore the budget of Miami-Dade County. The municipality is also referred to as Dade.Miami-Dade is one of the renowned counties based in the state of Miami. This paper will also highlight the extent to wish the county has ensured compliancy with the characteristics of a good budget system.
The financial planning strategies adopted by the Dade municipality is geared towards ensuring that the entire population which currently stands at 3.2 million people gets their necessities at a reduced prices. The budget allocation of the county is mostly used to cater for services like water provision, electricity and public transport. In order to cater for its huge expenses, the county of Dade under the leadership of Natacha Seijas introduced wide range of licenses and permits as an avenue through which it collects its income. For instance the county introduced the vendors’ permits which are supposed to make all the individuals dealing with taxable tangible properties to seek the permission from the county auditors in the auditors department. Another vital source of income for the county fees collected is via district health centers in the form of the food handling license. This permits states that every individual dealing with food preparation or distribution must obtain a license before he or she starts the business. It is vital to note that with the increased demand of public services by the entire population of Miami, the budgetary allocations that are streamlined by the county clearly define the priorities of a good budget.
Transparency of the Dade budget
In order to ensure that the public is aware of the usage of the taxes it pays in form of value added taxes and income tax, the municipality initiated a system which ensured that all social programs which included food for the elderly and the unemployed is catered for. The annual budget which ranges between 7.5 -8.1 Million US dollars gives the members of the public opportunities through which they can give their suggestions on how effective the county is able to give them social services at a subsidized rates. In order to uphold the ethics of work as well as accountability for the taxes paid by the residents, the commissioners allocated more extra funding for the elderly by cutting down their huge salaries by 10%.This was a great boost for the county based on the fact that due to the grate demand for the social and educational services most of the residents relied on the government financial support. Another crucial achievement that the commissioners have currently initiated is the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) Program. This is a program that gives orientation to the students and the youth on the dangers of using harmful drugs. Through the education services which are held on public places, the county has been able to make the residents have a good opportunity to witness how the tax they pay is utilized.
Projections of the budget and the Program expenditures
The most important aspect of a good budget is based on how effective it meets the stipulated expenditures in a specific fiscal year. In this regard the commissioners of Miami-Dade introduced Adker Settlement tax in the year 2000.This tax is stipulated that for the next five years(2000-2005)25% of its revenues will cater for the Community Development BlockGrant.This tax was also intended to support the homeless and the individuals with low salaries acquire houses. In addition, through the coordination of the with the U.S. District Court based in Florida, the revenue generated by the Adker Settlement tax gives the government financial back up in its endeavors to streamline the infrastructure system within and outside the municipality of Dade. Another initiative of the county which was introduced in 1999 was the ADPICS (Advanced Purchasing and Inventory Control System).The scheme entailed use of information technology in order to detect tax evaders as well as close monitoring of all the transactions taking place between the buyers and consumers of both basic needs and luxuries. The budget aims at collecting more that 100 Million US dollars. This indicates that the county budget has a vision thus making it qualify as a good budget (John, 2007).
Incentives for proper budget performance
The approval of the county budget has been faced with a lot of resistance both from the commissioners and from the general public. One of the major causes of the resistance is the increase in the pay cut that was initiated by Carlos Gimenez, one of the county commissioners. The commissioner proposed that the salary of the commissioners was supposed to be increased to 7.5% from the previous 4% for those who earned 100-150 Thousand US dollars. However this was not supported by the other commissioner. Basing on this fact it is prudent to note that though the county officials aimed at giving a comprehensible budget, they failed to have a strong ground and togetherness to make a realistic budget.
Strategic budgetary allocation
Miami-Dade budget has a strong allocation system that the commissioners have adopted. Using the information obtained from the municipality financial data, the total revenue that was generated in the fiscal year 2009-2010 was 7.8 Billion US dollars. Out of this, capital projects were allocated 5% which is equivalent to 3.1 Billion US dollars. The intention of allocating the huge sum of money to these projects is based on the recognization that it is through such projects that wealth is created which leads to reduced poverty and improved living standards of Miami residents. Another sector that has been effectively addressed by the current budget is the fire department. Having allocated 43% of the total budget, the department has not only being effective in reducing the negativities caused by fire outbreak but it has also reduced the expenditures of insurance companies in the form of reduced compensation to affected business people. It is therefore clear that the budgetary allocation of the county qualifies as a good budget since it gives stable reasons as to why it gives priority to some departments to others.
Public support of the budget
As mentioned earlier a good budget needs to have a strong support from the general public. This is based on the fact that it is the same public that enjoys the social services funded by the government. Likewise, in cases of low quality services the public becomes the victim and experiences the consequences. The strong support that the Dade budget has experienced for the last 10 Years is based on the gradual adjustment that it has initiated leading to increased disposable income for the Miami-Dade residents. For example, the budget data that was released on January 15 2010, revealed a dramatic reduction of financial contributions by the residents. Major adjustments included the reduction of funds that are supposed to be paid by residents for the purpose of car parking, community programs, culture and arts and maintenance of grounds. Basically the adjustments resulted to increase in the level of public savings by about 200 Million US dollars. In return of this initiative, the public has fully supported the commissioners’ budget. One of the reasons as to why members of the public have confidence with the municipality budget is that it has increased the public purchasing power as a result of reduced expenditure. Secondly the increased demand of goods and services has resulted to increased production of goods. As a result, job opportunities have been created leading to increased per capital income. In this regard it is clear that the budget system is quite effective both for the county commissioners and for the general public.
Based on the above analysis, it is prudent to acknowledge the efforts done by the county of Dabe in ensuring that despite the economic repercussions of the global recession it has done all the best to ensure that common citizens gets the best services. According to my view, it is very important for government agencies, private companies and non-profit making organizations emulate effective budget as a way of avoiding financial scandals and misuse of resources the core causes of business down fall.
John, M. (2007).Fiscal administration: Analysis and applications for the public sector, New York: Wadsworth.
Implication of Macro Economic on Budgetary System of Dade
In order to equip your self for future budget strategy in date there are some crucial things that you need to put into consideration.They are the key factors to consider when preparing a budget of any developed or developing countries.
One of the most important things to research on is the state of people employments and unemployment levels in Dade. You can achieve this by knowing the average level of income for the residents of Miami and considering how it can affect the national income of the state generally. Try to value it and find out if the allocation of funds for new employments is necessary.
Secondly, the issue of trade in a place is another great thing to put into consideration as a budgeter.Make sure that you are updated about trading system adopted by the government and its implications on the income of individuals. Try to relate the trade of your area with other neighboring states and see if much money is allocated in it you can beat the competition and emerge the best.It is always advisable to read the tactics of the competitors who are better than you or who are in the same level with you. Also consider the effectiveness of the government policies. Is there any possibility of being obtaining extra fund from the central government or foreign agencies? Finally consider the general annual income and the spending culture adopted by the residents of Miami regardless of their social status. In this way it will give you a strong background to examine whether the employment levels, inflation or government intervention have a relationship with the standard of living for Miami residents.