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2019 - 21 Budget Instructions - Base Budget

2019-21 Base Budget Instructions

The base budget provides the funding necessary to continue the existing, authorized level of services for the 2019-21 biennium. The base budget is an agency's opportunity to adjust budgets to better reflect actual expenditures and revenue collections and provide a more accurate spending plan for the biennium. This should promote effective decision making, increase transparency, and reduce the number of budget revisions needed throughout the fiscal year.

Preparing the base budget is an interactive process as agencies work closely with OSBM to make appropriate adjustments to the Base Budget. The Base Budget process is required for governmental and proprietary budget codes as defined in G.S. 143C-1-3 that OSBM determines to be included in the Governor’s Recommended Budget. Base Budget Development Job Aids and Reference Materials can be found on the OSBM website.

Generating the Base Budget Document

The process to develop the 2019-21 Base Budget begins by generating the Base Budget Document (Worksheet I) from the self-service budget development reports within IBIS.  An overview of useful Base Budget reports, including a description of the Base Budget Document, is located here. The Base Budget Document uses the FY 2018-19 authorized budget as the starting point for the 2019-21 Base Budget and provides previous fiscal year actuals as well as the FY 2018-19 certified and authorized budgets.

Once the Base Budget Document has been generated in IBIS, recurring budget revisions approved by OSBM will be pulled in manually to update the Base Budget Document. This ensures that an agency's FY 2018-19 authorized budget in the Base Budget Document is current.

Any increases or decreases that are not allowed through budget revisions but are allowed through the Base Budget development process may be requested through a Base Budget entry in IBIS. Any changes approved by OSBM using a Base Budget entry in IBIS will reflect in the Increase/Decrease column on the Base Budget Document. The FY 2018-19 authorized budget added together with the Increase/Decrease column becomes the 2019-21 Base Budget. A useful reference document that describes each column in the Base Budget document is located here.

The 2019-21 Base Budget can be changed in four ways through the Base Budget development process.

Adjustments Allowed in the Base Budget

  1. Adjustments to the FY 2018-19 Authorized Budget:

Agencies should examine FY 2018-19 authorized budgets for opportunities to realign budgets from over-funded to under-funded line items and to budget receipts at accurate levels. Agencies should also reconcile budgeted salaries and benefits as well as Salary Control in IBIS as part of this review. OSBM will provide tools to assist in comparing budgeted salaries and BEACON salary information. Realignments within the same fund, adjusting receipts levels, salary, benefit, and Salary Control reconciliations can be accomplished through budget revisions that are pulled into the Base Budget Document.

Job Aid on Allowable Changes to Authorized Budget provides more detailed instructions.

  1. Allowable Base Budget Increases and Decreases: Base Budget increases and decreases do not change the authorized budget but are shown separately in the Base Budget Document and may increase or decrease total spending for a purpose or program as authorized by G.S. 143C-1-1(d)(1c), including:
    1. Realignments to accurately reflect receipts, expenditures, and fund balances across purposes or programs;[1]
    2. Increases or decreases for programs and positions that were partially funded in the previous fiscal year;
    3. Adjustments for prior year nonrecurring increases or decreases;
    4. Changes for federal payroll tax changes and existing lease rate increases;
    5. Reconciliation of intra-governmental and inter-governmental transfers; and
    6. Adjustments for legislative and statutory requirements.

In most cases, these adjustments should be made in the Base Budget. However, depending on the extent to which a proposed change affects the scope of a program, OSBM may require these adjustments to be submitted as Change Budget adjustments.

Job Aid on Allowable Increases and Decreases to the Authorized Budget provides more details on budget adjustments allowed during the Base Budget process.

IBIS Worksheet I Training Guide includes information on how to enter a Base Budget entry in IBIS to realign and/or restructure your budget.

  1. Budget Restructuring: Through a Base Budget entry in IBIS, agencies also have the opportunity to restructure budgets, i.e. to make changes to the budget fund structure. For example, if a program is comprised of multiple funds, agencies can combine those into one fund through the Base Budget process. Combining funds may increase operational flexibility and reduce the number of budget revisions needed throughout the year. Budget structure changes should not necessarily be the result of, or require, a reorganization within an agency; restructuring the budget may simply be an opportunity to operate more efficiently. However, if a budget restructuring involves a reorganization, a report must be made to the Joint Legislative Committee on Governmental Operations and Fiscal Research as required by GS 143B-10.

Agencies interested in restructuring their budgets should complete the budget restructuring attachment. Restructuring plans should not be entered into IBIS until an agency has consulted its OSBM analyst and all other Base Budget entries have been approved.

  1. Fund Review and Updates to Fund Purpose Statements: OSBM will send agencies a list of their funds to review and determine whether the fund needs to be printed in the Base Budget publication or not. For those funds included in the publication, agencies then need to update the Fund purpose statements for the fund, because these will be printed in the Base Budget publication. Fund purpose statements explain the programs, expenditures, and revenues that are managed within each specific fund. Fund purpose statements are a key component of the Base Budget document allowing decision makers and the public to understand how programs are funded. Fund purpose statements should be updated in IBIS by September 24, 2018.

Job Aid on Updating Fund Purpose Statements

In addition, to support OSBM's review of the base budget, agencies may be asked to submit supplemental information on relevant service and activity data, such as data on populations served and at what cost for the funding level in the base budget.

All Base Budget adjustments requests and associated documentation are due to OSBM by October 24, 2018. Agencies are strongly encouraged to attach backup documents to the Base Budget Entries in IBIS. If necessary, agencies may submit backup attachments to your OSBM Budget Execution Analyst by email.

Base Budget Job Aids

Base Job Aid: Base Budget Reports
Base Job Aid: Authorized Budget Changes
Base Job Aid: Fund Purpose Statement
Base Job Aid: Increases and Decreases/WS1
Base Attachment: Annualization Schedule
Base Attachment: Lease Increase
Base Attachment: Restructuring Plan
Base IBIS User Guide for WSI
Base Worksheet 1 Reference Columns of report described