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The Process

The budget process for Colorado counties is governed by Colorado Revised Statute Title 29 Article 1 and requires that counties adopt a balanced budget.

The budget process starts early in the year beginning with assessing the Board’s goals and priorities for the coming year.  Based on those decisions, the County Manager provides guidance to Offices and Departments mid-year.  Through the second quarter, Offices and Departments work on refining their budgets for the next year including preparing requests for additional funding, if necessary.

Recommendations and Adoption

The County Manager prepares a recommended preliminary budget for the Board of County Commissioners which is presented on or before Oct. 15, as required by state statute.

Between Oct. 15 and Dec. 15, the Board of County Commissioners deliberates and makes changes for the final adoption.  At the time the budget is adopted, taxes are also levied complying with state statute which specifically states a budget must be adopted prior to the levying of taxes.

Throughout the year, Douglas County’s budget is amended to provide spending authority for new revenues or initiatives not known or anticipated at the time of adoption as well as administrative purposes to provide spending authority in the current year for rollover projects and restricted funds.  This process is known as a supplemental budget appropriation and provides spending authority to utilize these additional revenues or sources of funding not adopted in the budget.  State law requires appropriation prior to funds being spent.