Biennial Budgeting:

The State Examples--Summary of the Major Issues

PAD-83-14: Published: Dec 23, 1982. Publicly Released: Jan 10, 1983.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO presented a part of its study on biennial budgeting discussing the biennial budget processes of Ohio, Wisconsin, and Florida.

While budgeting may often be tailored to the unique needs and characteristics of a state, GAO learned that certain aspects of the budget processes of the states which it visited are relevant and adaptable to a federal biennial cycle. GAO stated that, if such a process were to be designed for the federal government, the following elements should be considered: (1) an effective control and adjustment mechanism is needed with the installation of a 2-year budget cycle; (2) an early consensus on revenue estimates by the executive and legislative branches can substantially reduce revenue estimating problems; and (3) although biennial budgeting allows time for long-term planning, it may not necessarily occur.

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