Government Finance Officers Association of Texas Newsletter ~ Februay 2003
In this issue:
* Zero-Base Budgeting
Revisited - Three Decades The budget crunches continue to worsen
across many parts of the state, which makes
* Nominiating Committee for an interesting budget season lurking on
Appointed. the horizon. I find it interesting that the
workloads don’t reduce with a decline in
* Q&A Regarding Going After resources. Perhaps they even increase.
Delinquent Utility Accounts
That Move To Another Texas These are more reasons to build our skills to
City. handle today’s fiscal realities while being equally
mindful of the need to look ahead for either
* Reminders/Notices. bigger boulders or perhaps a clearing to suggest
the actions we need to be formulating as
* Favorite Links.
finance officers. Lewis points out some things
* Professional Awareness: that help with that perspective in the ZBB article. Resources are never going to
Distinctive Innovation be ahead of service demands. It is an old story.
Service Awards - Applica- I think maybe storytelling is what we should trade-off for number crunching - or
tions Due Feb. 15, 2003. at least we need to find a balance. We need to look up more often to see the
story. Part of the story is that we are together in the story. By that I mean we
* Region 9 Meets in Copperas are all mostly in the same predicament. It is to our great fortune that we may
Cove. individually find a solution or two that we can pass on to others in the form of a
* Answers to January Cross-
word Puzzle. I really appreciate Don Jennings asking his question about ways to chase down
utility payers who leave town. I am further impressed that when his great idea
* Spring Conference Prelimary
Program. hit a stumbling block, he varied his approach rather than just stop. His second
question prompted an expanded idea from Bennett Sandlin. I hear that Don is
* 2002-2003 Conference going to approach his regional colleagues about this topic at their next meeting.
Planner. A story is likely to be unfolding. I can’t wait for the next chapter.
* New Members and Making What is your story? Please share them in the form of an article or a question.
Changes. Come to our conferences to exchange ideas. I think everyone can come away
with a big return on their investment when attending conferences and regional
* Thanks To Our Sponsors. meetings. In a nutshell, this is what GFOAT is all about: creating the avenues
and forums to trade stories. We are encouraged, because at the very least we
* Job Announcements!
know that we are not alone. Thanks to all of our story tellers.
* GFOAT Leadership Contact
Information. Diana Ortiz
Zero-Base Budgeting Revisited:
An Assessment Three Decades After Introduction
By Lewis F. McLain, GFOAT Executive Director
Zero-Base Budgeting (ZBB) has reared its trendy head Many finance and city management professionals expressed
again, three full decades since its birth. Most cities would a collective sigh of relief. Some were quick with an “I-Told-
say they don’t subscribe to ZBB principles. In reality, most You-So” response. Inside a single organization, you could
cities have remnants of ZBB in their budgeting process find plenty of people to line up on both sides of the evalu-
and probably do not realize it. Those entities that tried to ation of ZBB. Many government officials had an informed
implement ZBB in the past are likely to have less than opinion of ZBB. More people had an opinion yet had never
fond memories of ZBB. Many government officials use the really given ZBB an honest try. The true testimony to ZBB
term to connote their own understanding of ZBB or to is that pieces can be found in almost every city today.
say something as generic as the well-worn phrase, “bare-
bones budget.” The purpose of this article is to help put This Soldier’s Assessment
ZBB into context as its author intended juxtaposed with
today’s budget atmosphere and search for a panacea. First, I can offer only my assessment of ZBB – from three de-
a minor point of clarification: the term is “Zero-Base Bud- cades back through the potential use for today. I am a
geting,” not “Zero-Based.” It would be like saying “rock- fervent supporter of ZBB. I have long thought that it
bottomed” instead of “rock-bottom.” A telltale sign that should be resurrected for two reasons:
the user has picked up the jargon (almost) but not the
• The concepts are logical, practical and incorpo-
correct spelling, if you will, is when “based” is used instead
rate the essence of good consensus building and
A Brief History • The primary reason for its impracticality and ulti-
mate failure, the heavy volume of manual paper-
ZBB is the creation of Peter A. Phyrr. He worked at Texas work, can now be accommodated with our arse-
Instruments, where he designed and implemented the nal of data compilation and management tools.
process. He coined the term and wrote a book on the
process in 1973. He had actually already written an article The brilliance of Zero-Base Budgeting is embodied in sev-
on ZBB for the Harvard Business Review before the book eral principles that almost no serious budget professional
was published. To be brief, Governor Jimmy Carter read today could argue is not good financial management:
the article and brought Phyrr to Georgia to implement
ZBB. Governor Dolph Briscoe picked up on the wave and • The ZBB process is by its very nature a bottom-
brought Peter and ZBB to Texas. Chris Hartung, Assistant up process. It forces budget preparation to come
City Manager at the City of Garland brought Phyrr and ZBB from the managers closest to the programs and
to the first city in the country to implement ZBB. I was a spending.
budget analyst at Garland who had gone through one
round of line-item budgeting and was then catapulted • ZBB is about formulating budget packets into
into ZBB. understandable and meaningful structures for de-
cision making. Looking at spending needs at the
Several cities around the country rushed to learn about department level is too high while looking at the
ZBB, and many decided to embrace and implement the line-item level is too low. ZBB is about packaging
information to serve up to the next level of man-
process. Actually, what happened is that ZBB became a
agement and ultimately to the city council.
hot topic at conferences attended by city managers and
elected officials. As a staff at Garland, we could tell there
• Slicing the budgeting into horizontal packets is
had been a conference somewhere in the country when just the first dissection step in ZBB. The second
a surge of phone calls from panicky staffers came in re- step to separate the budget into meaningful build-
questing copies of instruction manuals, forms and personal ing blocks involves establishing various levels of
explanation. The GFOA (known then as the MFOA) es- service or a vertical slicing of the budget. This is
tablished a series of ten training sessions across the coun- where the process got sticky, complicated. More
try coordinated by Touche Ross (now Deloitte & Touche) on this later.
and co-presented with practitioners from user cities, in-
cluding Garland. I represented the Garland story at five of • ZBB is about analysis of the budget. The ZBB
those seminars. ZBB spread like wildfire around the coun- structure involved asking managerial questions.
try over the next several years. The love affair with ZBB The forms were intended to answer the most
ended due to the major complaint: way too much paper- basic questions: Why are you asking for this? What
work and way too little time to make use of the forms happens if we cut this from the budget? What
generated. are alternative ways to provide this service?
• ZBB is about establishing priorities. The pri- It is helpful to review the potential Decision Units (DU) on
mary selling point to city managers and city coun- paper before any in-depth ZBB work begins, before any
cils is that it deals with the root problem that major form completion begins. There are no particular lim-
infuriates and insults the decision makers in the its as to how many DU’s might be established for a par-
budget process. Instead of plopping the whole ticular department. As a practical matter, the minimum
budget in their laps, ZBB requires priorities to be should be the general functional or programmatic break-
established within the departments and between down of the budget below the department level: The
the departments before involving the city man- Fire Department might have the following Decision Units:
ager. Ultimately, the council is served options and
is offered a structured way to finalize the budget • Fire Administration.
based on their affirmation of staff recommenda-
tions or the council’s reprioritized views. • Fire Prevention.
Can a single person find fault with the objectives and mo- • Fire Suppression.
tives of ZBB I’ve outlined? Does it not drip with the smell
of apple pie, the virtue of motherhood and the ring of
responsible managerial duty in the most honorable Ameri- • Fire Training.
• Emergency Ambulance Service.
Let’s Go A Little Deeper Into ZBB
Service Level Decision Packages
The reader will hopefully realize that this is not a pitch to
sell Zero-Base Budgeting. The emphasis is on defining ZBB, Developing the Decision Units is a fairly easy task com-
the intentions behind the original design and whether or pared to the next major step in the ZBB process. The
not government leaders are sure they know what they exercise involves defining several service levels for each
may be calling for when they initiate the charge to imple-
Decision Unit. While there is flexibility in the manner used
ment ZBB. It is the characteristics of ZBB, not its snazzy
sounding name that deserves a fair assessment and is the for establishing service levels, the idea is to define multiple
purpose of this article. ZBB terminology is used by design, levels, primarily in this order:
although additional explanation is offered as instructive aids.
• Current level of service. The existing level of
The Decision Unit service provided to citizens. For solid waste, it
might be twice per week pickup for residential
ZBB defines the basic budget building block to be the customers. It could by definition include addi-
Decision Unit. Its strength is in its flexibility. That is, the tional staff to serve a growing population. You
Decision Unit definition is allowed to rise to the needs of
may perhaps already see the anxiety caused by
the individual budget manager. A Decision Unit could be a
number of things. ZBB. Let’s keep going. It gets worse.
• A program or division within a department, • Reduced level of service. There could be more
such as Records Management within the Police than one reduced level of service. A typical defi-
Department. This program or function did not nition is to provide the best level of service with
have to be separate by existing accounting struc- resources constrained to the current level or to
ture. This presents a challenge that was met years a level 3-5% lower than the current level. In
after ZBB was created when electronic spread- these cases, the critical distinction is to point
out where the service might not be as good as
• A single line item, almost always of a significant the current level but is still provided to the citi-
nature but one involving a policy decision and a zens. Response times slower for fire or police;
funding decision. An example might be the Tu- library closed on Sunday or only open one night
ition Refund expenditure housed in the Human per week are examples of reduced levels of ser-
Resource Department. vices.
• A major capital replacement decision that af- • Minimum level of service. Budget managers
fects one or a number of departments, such as a are asked to develop a reduction plan that is as
policy to replace desktop computers every three
low as possible without discontinuing the ser-
years instead of every four years.
vice. A reduction below the minimum level is the
• New programs and other initiatives previously same, essentially, as eliminating the service. This
not in the budget. This might include a tennis was the death knell of ZBB. The weight of mass
center or a community policing program. Instead wailing and gnashing of teeth was overshadowed
of having a new program housed in the parks or only by the physical weight of the paper pro-
police department, the idea is to separately iden- duced to develop these reduced service level
tify those things upon which a decision might be budget.
made independent of other decisions.
• Enhancement levels of service. The budget • Describe the level of service in this DP. What
managers are then asked to create Supplemen- are the service hours? What is the response time?
tal Decision Packages. These could be expanded What sector of the total population is being
programs, existing programs that are increased served?
in some fashion. Examples are extended hours
for the library, park mowing at a greater frequency • What are the benefits of funding this DP?
or restaurant inspections monthly instead of quar- Will more people be served? Will the city get in
terly. compliance with the law or industry norms? Will
more revenues be generated? Will the city be-
• New Programs. These are treated as Supple- come more independent or more in control of
mental Decision Packages, but the distinction is their destiny? Will the city reduce its risk in a par-
that the program is new or completely different ticular area?
in scope that causes it to be classified as a deci-
sion to enter into new service arenas such as • What are the consequences of not funding
audio-video services in libraries (some remember this DP? The differentiation of responses based
that VCR tapes, CDs and artwork were once not on each service level adds to the complexity of
a library service). ZBB. If the current level of service is not funded,
but the next level below is funded, then the con-
Let’s recap by quantifying what the ZBB process has es- sequences may be relatively mild: less people are
tablished at this point. An illustration will help. Assume served or response times are slower. However,
that the local government has twenty departments and the consequences would naturally grow in sever-
has had traditional line-item budgets. The focus was pre- ity as the service levels reach the minimum level,
viously on line-item justification. Now ZBB takes the twenty which we have previously defined.
departments and separates them into an average of six
Decision Units each. We now have 120 Decision Units. One of the most difficult aspects of ZBB is sepa-
We would now ask the budget managers to create five rating the real gore from the perceived ugly con-
Service Level Decision Packages for each Decision Unit. sequences. In any case, there are some serious
We now have the budget sliced and diced into 600 Deci- consequences that need to be established. Will
sion Units. Now what? the city be breaking the law? Will lawsuits be more
likely? Will complaints rise to serious levels? Will
Preparing For Decision Package Analysis revenues be lost?
There is no tool more powerful to explore, to dissect and • What are some alternative ways to provide
to analyze a subject than the question. Structured, pen- this package? Now it’s time to get creative, to
etrating and meaningful questions unlock the doors that see how resourceful budget managers can be. A
lead to understanding and become the foundation for natural option is to look at outsourcing (yes, it
formulating a conclusion, a direction and the all-important was a live topic 30 years ago!). It could mean to
decision. The brilliance of ZBB is in the dissection of the automate or to delegate to some other govern-
budget and the analysis of each of the parts. mental entity, if possible. The idea is to cause
the budget manager to search for significant op-
To appreciate the process, let’s first move away from bud- tions that might be served up to the CEO or gov-
get forms and the busy budget grind to visualize a setting erning body.
for assessment. This could be a self-assessment, for the
ZBB exercise is about preparation for a management re- • What is the impact on revenues? While this
view. ZBB is an examination, a test where you are given question is usually addressed in either the “ben-
the questions in advance. Every government could fash- efits” or “consequences” evaluative question, ZBB
ion this part of the ZBB process to fit a particular manage- isolates revenues for further understanding. In
ment environment. Let’s play with a set of budget man- general, it does not make sense to reduce or
agement questions applied to each Decision Package (DP): eliminate a decision package that has a compan-
ion revenue offset. However, it is important to
• What is the purpose of this DP? Why does it know specific linkages between revenues and ex-
exist? What does it attempt to achieve? What penditures, and this is the place to explain.
group does it serve?
• What are the resources required to provide
• Describe this DP. What is the process? How is this decision package? What are the staffing
the service delivered? Is this a demand-driven ser- levels committed in both hours and dollars? What
vice, such as fire suppression or is this service one facilities and equipment resources are required?
that is used primarily through education to the The key is to look at a summary of the major
recipients, such as a children’s reading program in dollars dedicated to fund this package. It is one
the library? side of the resource analysis to match with the
next evaluation question.
• What are we getting for the resources we be that the top management would tweak rather
are providing for this DP? This is a fair ques- than completely revamp the priorities.
tion and is fundamental to the justification for
the spending of public money. It is the quantifi- • The governing body could then be presented with
cation of many factors explained textually in sev- a budget that is both packaged nicely for deci-
eral of the previous answers. How many people sion making and bearing the values of importance
will be served? Acres mowed? Miles of streets or from the lowest level of management (the su-
sewer lines cleaned or repaired? This is the out- pervisors and budget managers) through the
put section of the DP that can be further en- department heads and top city management. The
hanced with efficiency and effective ratios when council themselves could then establish their own
the resources are divided by the output. priorities if they desired and if made part of the
• What is the priority you place on this deci-
sion package? This is a critical part of ZBB. While The Budget Decision-Making Forum
the focus on analysis up to now has been on the
individual decision package, a value relative to all Visualize a listing of budgetary Decision Packages, ranking
of the other decision packages is established at from 1 to 600. Next, imagine for illustration purposes that
this point. It is important to understand the the current tax rate and all General Fund revenues estab-
prioritization process and how it leads to deci- lishes a funding level that covers Decision Packages 1
sion making. More will be explained in the next through 520. There are 80 packages not funded. This is
section. not the ending; this is the beginning of the important
deliberative process. The basic levels of services to meet
The Ranking Process the legal obligations of the city and to provide most of
the core services are probably within the first 400 pack-
The example used earlier was 20 departments allocated ages. The more outlandish packages, such as the police
into an average of 6 Decision Units and each Decision helicopter, are likely to be in the 580 to 600 range. In
Unit having 5 levels of service to result in 600 Decision other words, why spend time on discussions of services
Packages. Each of the 600 packages is put through an in- and service levels that are not likely to become budget
depth budget management analysis. But now what do cuts? Similarly, why spend time on items that are not pri-
you do with the 600 blocks of budgets? It is easier to orities and might only be funded if the city were flush
describe the final outcome of the ZBB process and then with money?
go back to fill in a few blanks.
The idea behind ZBB is to perhaps limit the dialogue mostly
The ZBB process is about serving up to management and to the 50 packages that barely got funded within the
policy makers a segmented budget ordered in a way to current revenue base and the 50 packages that barely
focus mainly on exceptions. The 600 packages might be lost out due to funding realities. Each of the 100 pack-
presented to the council after going through three levels ages has been prepared to answer the fundamental bud-
of prioritization. For example: getary managerial questions that explain and justify the
request. Each has already answered the questions about
• The police chief may have brought his assistants benefits and consequences. Some may have already sug-
and captains together to rank all of their 40 Deci- gested alternative ways to provide the service level.
sion Packages. The entire group of Decision Pack-
ages would be reviewed, discussed, defended and In an honest ZBB exercise, the prioritization process will
justified. Finally, a ranking of all 40 packages against likely result in a few existing service level packages falling
each other would be provided to the assistant below the funding line and some expansionary packages
city manager over public safety and other areas being above the cut-off line recommended for funding. If
of the city. any budget exercise is worth its salt, it will demonstrate
how resource reallocations result from a methodical, delib-
• The police chief and other department heads, erative process.
along with the assistant city manager, might then
review the bottom third of all departmental Deci- Can you see the value in having a structured way to dis-
sion Packages. The bottom third might represent sect the budget, analyze the budget completely and then
the discretionary or marginal Decision Packages to organize a ranking that has input from each tier of man-
that make up about 20-30% of the budget dollar agement?
requests. They would then rank these packages
among themselves. What Can You Do With The Ranking?
• The city manager and assistant city manager might This is a fascinating feature of ZBB. The focus, as men-
then meet to review the priority list. As with all tioned, is placed on those packages just below or just
top managers, they would have the ability to above the cut-off line. Meaningful discussions could then
reprioritize. In a reasonable organization where be directed to trade-off decisions. A true reallocation of
the management team truly functions that way resources tool is placed in front of city management and
and is not in name only, the expectation would even the city council.
The current tax rate of the General Fund could be placed The wording used here is similar to Phyrr’s original scoring
by a cumulative dollar value of the ranked Decision Pack- explanations but has been enhanced to illustrate the rela-
ages. It is then easy to show the tax rate equivalent of tionship of 1 and 6, 2 and 5 and then 3 and 4. It is also an
funding each successive package above the cut-off line effort to illustrate the flexibility and to establish a subtle
and the potential reduction in funding if the inclination is but effective way to solicit a judgment value that can
to discuss a tax cut. lead to a decision.
Other revenue increase options can be quickly measured
The rules of the ranking process changed slightly when
with the packages that might be restored. In essence,
department heads started ranking packages collectively.
the final balancing of the budget, whether it be inside
It was clear at the outset that games could and would be
the city manager’s conference room with top aides or
whether it be within the context of a council budget played. For instance, every package is top priority in the
workshop, can be managed without laborious recalcula- minds of some resistant department heads. Without get-
tions. The development of the ZBB packages is a major ting too much into the details, it was decided that de-
task, but the balancing exercise is methodical and can partment heads could not vote on their own packages.
present less anxiety than has been experienced in previ- Also, all department heads had a limitation on the number
ous years. of 6’s and 5’s that could be used. Lastly, all of the depart-
ment heads’ votes were taken before results were re-
More About The Ranking Process vealed, and none of the individual votes were disclosed.
There was a bonus that came out of the ZBB process However, every department head knew that their values
that was applied to even more decision-making opportu- could be reviewed by top management. The encourage-
nities in Garland. Peter Phyrr was insistent that the rank- ment to be responsible increased when acts of bias or
ing process involve the collective judgment of budget even simple bad-mood or grudge relationships would be
managers, department heads, top management and even- evident if outrageously low values were heavily used by a
tually the entire council. He devised a six-point voting scale. voter. Also, gross deviations from the group could be de-
The rationale was that the scale needed to be an even- tected. Perhaps you can already see where the 6’s and
number of values. An odd-number provides too much of a 5’s must be spent carefully, and the emphasis on the mar-
propensity to select the middle ground. This is clear in ginal 3’s and 4’s provided a new awareness of what it was
many judgment calls when the tendency is to stay in a like to be in the city manager’s seat!
comfort zone. In personnel evaluations, provide a supervi-
sor with a 1-5 scale and look how many times the value of It should be pointed out that a tremendous strength of
3 is used. the ZBB process was that painful yes and no, black and
white individual decisions were replaced with the collec-
The ZBB ranking process involved a 1-6 scale. It basically
tive judgment of several people – 20 department heads
made the values of 3 and 4 similar except it imposed a
or 9 council members. It was the equivalent of the prin-
judgment call on the evaluator, a leaning one way or an-
ciple of allowing one member of a firing squad to have a
other. The entire array could be interpreted, generally, as
follows: blank in his gun so that everybody can think perhaps they
were not responsible. A little attempt at some humor for
• 6 Packages should definitely be funded as those who have persevered to get to this point in the
a minimum level of service or due to the signifi- article.
cant benefit associated with the package or the
dire consequences of not funding the package. The Voter Scale Results
• 5 Very important package. Should be given Let’s go back to our example where it was pointed out
a high priority for funding. that the focus was going to be on 50 packages on both
sides of the cut-off line of package number 520. How did
• 4 Package has merit and should be funded we get the ranking order of 1 through 600? In reality, the
if resources are sufficient or can be provided city manager and budget office went over the list and
within reason. separated the basic minimum levels of most services and a
• 3 Package has merit but should be consid- few others that were going to happen no matter what.
ered for budget reduction if resources are not Let’s say that 460 out of the 600 were considered 6’s
sufficient and an increase in funding cannot be right from the outset.
The 19 departments heads (remember 1 could not vote
• 2 Not very important and probably should on his/her own packages) might have ranked all of the
not be funded unless reworked or if future other 140 packages. To make the arithmetic simple, as-
changes in circumstances increase importance. sume that the assistant city manager also voted, making
every package have 20 voters. The highest value for a
• 1 This package has no merit and should
single package would be 120 (20 voters x the value of 6)
not be considered for funding under any circum-
and the lowest would be 20 if a single package received a
rating value of 1 by all 20 voters.
Once all of the packages had been presented to the de- The result is a ranking of the 100 packages, with the
partment heads and assistant city manager, a process that funding cut-off theoretically at or about the middle. Now
might take a full day or two, the city manager was pre- the stage is set for a meaningful dialogue with the coun-
sented the budget in two groups: cil. Trade-offs can be discussed, funded packages might
be replaced by packages previously unfunded. A tax rate
• The “base” budget of 460 packages that could impact of funding additional packages can be easily under-
be reviewed and altered but basically already had stood by moving down the list and looking at the cumula-
been considered in the recommend for funding tive tax rate equivalent associated with each package. A
category. program impact can be understood if funding is reduced
through a tax rate reduction. A bundle of packages can
• The ranking of the other 140 packages with val- be isolated for funding should sales tax revenues appear
ues of 120 down to 20. to be surpassing a conservative assumption. In any case,
the ZBB process can lead to calm and collegial results:
The Final Ranking collective decisions and informed decisions.
Visualize, if you will, the final ranking that could be done What Did I Leave Out?
by the city manager, the city council or both. Let’s as-
sume the city manager has accepted the collective rank- Plenty. The methodology to allocate costs below normal
ing of the department heads and assistant city manager. budgetary divisions was a nightmare when done manually
30 years ago before spreadsheets were invented. Those
Packages 1 through 460 are recommended for funding.
cost separations would be much easier today but would
No debate. Packages 461 through 520 can be funded at
still require more spreadsheets than now used in a volumi-
the current revenue levels. Packages 521 through 600
nous budget process. And no matter how many ways the
cannot be funded at current tax rate and other revenue
budget is sliced and diced, the city eventually has to com-
levels. The city manager would certainly support several pile all of the funded packages into line items for budget
of the unfunded packages but is obligated to present a control purposes. I would not want to play down the
balanced budget for council consideration. sizeable effort, but I feel compelled to say it’s doable with
It is possible that the council could rank all 600 packages.
Bad idea, though, with no hopes that they could or would Illustrations of forms have not been provided. This article
want to spend that much time discussing every package. attempts to present the process and concepts in a few
Depending on the circumstances, a variety of approaches pages instead of the couple of hundred pages it would
could be taken. Let’s assume the city manager wants to take to paint a comprehensive picture. Some forms would
reach down to possible program reductions, a demonstra- be helpful, but I would offer that a collection of city
tion that an earnest effort was put forth to scrub the managers and budget officers, if asked to describe
budget. The challenge is to strike the optimal balance of the ideal budget preparation process, would likely
participation from the council given time constraints and include many features described in this article about
other political realities. ZBB. In other words, erase the Zero-Base Budgeting label
and describe a collaborative, well-documented process and
The city manager could take a block of packages on both you may very well describe many of the features of ZBB.
sides of the cut-off line. In the illustration, let’s continue
our illustration and assume that the council is presented Then visualize the forms and instructions to collect the
with 100 packages for final prioritization, 50 packages that information and the mechanics to turn the conceptual
were the last to be funded and 50 that would be the budget model into a tangible and teachable process. My
next to be funded if revenues were sufficient. After pre- guess is that you may come very close to designing the
senting the overall picture of the entire budget of 600 ZBB forms even if you had never seen them.
packages in summary form, the 100 package subset is
lifted out and set aside for the final ranking by the council. Give it a name. It probably wouldn’t be Zero-Base Bud-
geting. It would probably be called Decision Package Bud-
The council has nine members. Going through the same geting, but then DPB doesn’t have the sex appeal or the
process as the department heads and assistant city man- ring of ZBB.
ager went through, a workshop is held where the 100
packages are presented and explained. A three-ring note- ZBB forces a bottom-up process that involves budget man-
book of ZBB forms with the answers to the managerial agers at the lowest levels of the organization. That is good
questions has been provided ahead of time, so the 100 and is more common now than in the days before ZBB.
can be presented more efficiently or even presented on a Line item budgeting using “creeping incrementalism” as it
request basis by the council members wanting further clari- was called a few decades ago made it pretty easy for the
fication of individual packages. Finally, each councilmember department head to crank out a budget in a good after-
places a value of 1 through 6 on each of the packages noon without input from others within the department.
after being provided with a guideline to the use of the One of the greatest benefits of ZBB in Garland was that it
rating system. These are summed and ordered with 54 (9 involved bringing second-tier managers and even front-
council members x the highest value of 6) being the high- line supervisors into the process.
est score and 9 being the lowest. It was clear that the dinosaur department heads were
uncomfortable and equally clear that the new participants
in the budget process were interested, appreciative and The application of the original form of ZBB has in fact be-
resourceful. Realizing department heads would resist let- come more relevant today as many cities are facing Real-
ting their subordinates in on the budget process, the city Serious-I’m-Not-Kidding-Below-Bare-Bones-Budgeting. The
manager’s office sent out the invitation list to the budget tools unavailable in the 70’s that make ZBB unwieldy are
managers. This is all to say that ZBB has to have top man- now everyday data compilation and analytical extensions
agement support and fully participating staff across the of the budget manager via the personal computer.
What we need today are tools to package, prioritize and
The Failure of ZBB present management and policy makers with options. What
we need is a way to move a multitude of budget issues
There were several reasons why ZBB never reached a sus- through a multiple-interest maze of strong department
tained success level. The amount of paperwork was crush- heads and a council headed in multiple directions. What is
ing. ZBB produced many impressive 6-inch thick notebooks. needed is a tool that eases the burden of the chief bud-
Unfortunately, almost all of the time was spent compiling get writer, the city manager. ZBB has all of those charac-
information on forms and verifying mathematical accuracy teristics. It may be time to mesh a 30-year-old process
with the modern computing tools and to rethink the grief
with little time for real analysis. Many of the ideas regard-
we allow budget staffs to bear. It is clear that budget
ing alternative ways to provide a service were of too great
preparation is starting earlier and earlier each year while
a magnitude to evaluate during the extremely compressed
extending to the latest date possible before the drop-
budget time frame. Again, many of the automated spread- dead date for budget adoption. Any effort to use ZBB
sheet and word processing tools of today would likely have principles, at least most of its forms and much of the pro-
institutionalized ZBB. cess should be an improvement to the dilemma of how to
reach consensus for a balanced budget. The profession
ZBB in its purest form is ideal when there are major bud- cries out for help. lfm
get reductions being mandated. Unfortunately, the bud-
get was expanding in Garland and in many areas of the
country trying to implement ZBB in the 70’s. Therefore, GFOAT Board Nominating Committee
great resentment was registered by many of the budget Appointed By President Ortiz
managers, especially the dinosaur department heads, be-
cause ZBB turned out to be largely an academic exercise. President Diana Ortiz has appointed the Nominating Committee
It was their complaint, but it was also a valid complaint in for the upcoming officer elections. The positions will be 1)
many cases. President-Elect, 2) Treasurer, 3) North Representative and 4)
The Successes of ZBB
A candidate for the office of President-elect must currently
Yet, decision packaging did deliver a meaningful budget hold or have previously held an elected officer position in
tool regarding budgetary expansions. That is why you can GFOAT for at least one full two-year term. A candidate for
find varying designs of the Decision Package Budgeting the remaining offices must currently hold or have previously
today referred to as a supplemental request form or a bud- held a position of Regional Director or as member of a standing
get enhancement form. City management appreciated committee.
packaging information in order to serve up systematic, con-
sistent and complete budget requests. ZBB had a major The Nominating Committee will name one qualified member
from the active membership body as nominee for each of the
influence on local government.
positions to be filled and will then notify the President of the
The ranking process was used in many ways beyond ZBB.
In Garland, the very same voting process used in ZBB was The election of the president-elect and each of the positions
used to guide the city council on funding decisions for to be filled will be at our Spring Conference in April. The
Revenue Sharing, a Nixon program that involved allowing Nominating Committee Chair will present at the meeting a
money to be used for many community groups and discre- slate of candidates for the offices of president- elect and
tionary programs. It was also used to help shape the priori- other positions to be filled.
ties for a large number of capital projects to fit into a bond
election, a decision involving over 100 community volun- Additional nominations for the positions, except for the
teers. president-elect, may be made from the floor and voting will
be held for the other positions. The person receiving the
largest number of votes cast for each position to be filled will
Conclusion be declared elected. In case of a tie vote, the office or position
will be determined by lot.
Zero-Base Budgeting is a label given to a budget prepara-
tion revolution started back in the 1970’s. The snazzy name The Nominating Committee is Chaired by Rosie Vela. The
has been used and reused so much over the years that it members of the Committee include Anita Thetford, Charles
means dozens of things depending on the user. It now Cox, Glenn Windsor and Max Duplant. If you would like to be
generally means real serious budgeting that I suppose is a considered for any of these available positions or nominate a
notch or two below bare-bones budgeting. Whatever that person for the Committee to contact for consideration, please
is. call Rosie or one of the Nominating Committee members as
soon as possible.
Q&A Regarding Going After Reminders/Notices
Delinquent Utility Accounts
• Plan ahead for the TML Annual Conference in San
That Move To Another Texas City Antonio will be held November 19-22. Affiliates Day
would normally be on Thursday. However, TML is
Don Jennings, Finance Director, Perryton: Is there changing the format to be on Friday. Therefore, be
any reason that member cities couldn’t enter into some sure your plans to attend TML include staying for
type of joint agreement authorizing them to collect Affiliates Day on Friday, November 21.
delinquent utilities balances for each other when a customer
leaves one city and moves to another? For instance, if I • Be sure to notice that several changes have been make
leave Perryton owing a final water bill and move to Amarillo, to our Spring Conference format. The changes were
could there be some type of arrangement where by made to address many of the suggestions made by
Amarillo could agree to add that amount to their first bill attendees at our last few conferences.
and forward the funds back to Perryton? I understand of
course that there would be considerable amount of work • The GFOAT Fall Conference in Corpus Christi on October
and expense setting something like this up, but I just got 15-17 will also be a changed format. We will begin our
off the phone with a staff at an area city, and as small as committee meetings on Wednesday instead of Sunday.
they are they have over a quarter million dollars out in Our conference sessions will be on Thursday and Friday
uncollectible accounts. Please provide any insight you can with our conference ending at noon on Friday. Please
on this matter. plan accordingly.
Bennett Sandlin, Legal Services Director, TML: You Favorite Links
would think that local governments could use interlocal
contracts to jointly enforce each other’s delinquent utilities.
Unfortunately, a 2000 Texas Attorney General’s Opinion, Main address for state of Texas Web Site. A ton of
JC-219, seems to say no. I’m quoting here from the information through this portal. www.capitol.state.tx.us
If you want to straight to almost any Texas lawbook, go to
“Local governments that operate utilities or sanitary landfills may http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/statutes/statutes.html
not enter into an interlocal cooperation contract under the Interlocal
Cooperation Act, Tex. Gov’t Code Ann. ch. 791 (Vernon 1994 & If you want to look at any bill filed in the 78th Legislature,
Supp. 2000), whereby the parties to the contract would agree to including bills filed by date, author, sponsor, subject, go to
collect unpaid fees owed to the other parties and to refuse service http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlo/reports/daily/78R/
to customers who owe fees to the other parties, because an daily.htm. You can also go back to the last four legislative
agreement to withhold services from third parties is not an sessions.
agreement between local governments to provide to each other
“a governmental function or service that each party to the contract If you want to look up an AG opinion or Open Records
is authorized to perform individually,” see id. § 791.011(c)(2) Decision (ORD), go to www.oag.state.tx.us. You can also
(Vernon Supp. 2000).” get requests for opinions and ORDs on this site.
Attorney General opinions are not as binding as court cases, For a site that is well organized and has government
but my conservative advice is to follow it until we get a information for all states, go to the following site (for Texas)
more favorable statute or case. http://www.statelocalgov.net/tx.htm.
Don: Couldn’t cities publish “move out” delinquent accounts For a wealth of federal statistical information, go to http://
on some statewide database so all cities could look for www.fedstats.gov/.
where deadbeats may have moved?
The State Comptroller has volumes of news, reports and
Bennett: I would think you could share that information statistics that can be navigated from the main Web site
on a Web site, so long as you didn’t have a utility account located at http://www.cpa.state.tx.us/.
confidentiality request on file. See Utility Code Sec.
182.052, which prohibits government-operated utilities Get more directly to the State Comptroller’s sales tax
from disclosing personal information in a customer’s account information at http://www.cpa.state.tx.us/taxinfo/sales/.
record (personal information is defined as an individual’s Sales tax rates for all entities in Texas can be found here as
address, telephone number, or social security number), well as a 15-year monthly history of each entity’s sales tax
without their permission, if they have filed a written request collections.
with the utility. Note that the law does not prohibit the
disclosure of their name or delinquency amount. Like to read about things going on in Texas communities?
Links to 278 daily and weekly newspapers can be found at
Another thought: cities can require varying sizes of utility http://www.texaspress.com/onlinepapers.html.
deposits based on different factors. It’s plausible that Favorite Links this month by Patrick Elfrink and Lewis McLain
knowledge of delinquency in another city is a decent reason
to require a larger than normal initial deposit. I don’t believe
that’s prohibited by the AG opinion, but another city If you would like to pass on a favorite link to the membership,
attorney might disagree with me. please send your suggestions to ExecDir@gfoat.org
Capital Finance and Debt Administration:
Professional Awareness and You
• capital financing techniques such as
municipal bonds and lease-financing
Keith Nelson, NTTA
• debt planning, issuance and control
Rodney Gonzales, City of San Marcos • creative uses of debt finance in economic
DISTINCTIVE INNOVATION AWARD PROGRAM
Pensions and Benefits:
The GFOAT Distinctive Innovation Award program recog- • retirement and health benefits and other
nizes outstanding contributions and innovations in the field employment and post-employment
of government finance by a department , division, or team. • benefits, such as family leave, childcare, and
Management and Service Delivery:
GFOAT and non-GFOAT members may submit entries for • innovative service delivery (e.g., privatization,
consideration for the GFOAT Distinctive Innovations Award.
There are no fees or charges associated with this program;
however, recipients must be present at GFOAT’s spring • purchasing, risk management, and grants
conference to accept the award in person. administration
• quality and productivity tools relevant to
How to Submit an Application finance officers
• performance measurement
Applications will be accepted during the period of Decem-
ber 1, 2002 through February 15, 2003. Respond to all
Enterprise Financial Systems:
applications questions and feel free to add additional pages
if necessary. • outstanding RFPs
• technology for budgeting
Five (5) copies of the completed application form and any • innovative system procurement/contracting
accompanying documentation must be mailed to GFOAT
and be postmarked by the Feb 15th deadline.
• implementation methodology
Each entry may be entered in only one of the categories • change management programs (e.g., train
and subcategories. In order to determine the appropriate ing, end-user documentation)
category and subcategory for your entry, a description fol-
lows. The bulleted points under each category are intended Technology:
to serve as examples of areas from which award applica- • electronic commerce
tions could be submitted and are not intended to be inclu- • creative uses of the Web in public finance
sive. • technology outsourcing
• cost/benefit analysis for technology decisions
Categories • workflow
Accounting, Auditing, and Financial Reporting: Subcategories
• financial and cost accounting
• interim and annual financial reporting Policies and Procedures includes financial and administra-
• internal, performance, and financial auditing tive policies and procedures governing state, provincial,
and local finances or financial practices.
Budgeting and Financial Planning:
Management and Policy Studies includes publications,
• operating and capital budgeting projects and consulting studies that utilized new manage-
• financial forecasting ment tools and/or policy analysis methodologies.
• multi-year budgeting
• long-range financial planning Communications and Reporting includes publications, re-
• revenue and cost analysis ports or other media designed to improve the understand-
• fiscal trend monitoring ing or awareness of the finances and operations of the
organization. Documents eligible for the Certificate of
Cash Management and Investments: Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting, the Dis-
tinguished Budget Presentation Award, or the Popular
• capital financing techniques and practices Annual Financial Reporting Award are not eligible for the
cash forecasting, monitoring, and control Distinctive Innovation Award.
Training and Technical Guides includes any program or docu- Award Presentation
ment designed to instruct or guide others in the imple-
mentation or use of financial systems, procedures, or tech- The recipient of the award will be announced at the Asso-
niques. ciations annual spring banquet. The chairperson of the Pro-
fessional Awareness Committee shall make the formal pre-
Each application will be reviewed to make sure that all Eligibility
entries are in the appropriate category and subcategory.
GFOAT reserves the right to reassign submissions to a All active members of GFOAT are eligible for the award.
more appropriate category. The Distinctive Innovation
Award will not necessarily be awarded every year in each Nominations
category and subcategory.
Nominations may be made by any GFOAT or non-GFOAT
Applications are reviewed by a panel of (5) active GFOAT Member. Nominations should include:
members. All applications are reviewed by standard evalu-
ation criteria that include technical significance, transfer- A. Brief biography of the nominee:
ability, documentation, originality, and cost effectiveness.
Name, Address, Government Entity, Position
To assist you in evaluating your own application, we have
provided a copy of the rating form used by our reviewers.
B. Name and address of nominator:
A letter of nomination should also accompany
Award winners will be notified in writing by March 31,
Upon receipt of nominations, a request for the nominee’s
2003. Winning entries will be displayed at GFOAT’s spring
resume shall be sent to each nominee for judging purposes.
conference providing an opportunity for other financial
professionals to gain insight into successful and innovative
practices. Winners also will be asked to prepare a one- Criteria For Judging Applications
page information sheet describing the winning entry.
A. Active membership in governmental finance and
OUTSTANDING SERVICE AWARD professional organizations. Primary factors for
The Government Finance Officers Association of Texas
(GFOAT) has established an annual award program to rec- Conference and seminar attendance;
ognize outstanding contributions and service to the gov- • Committee memberships;
ernmental finance profession. The winner of this award • Board Memberships;
will be announced at the banquet during the GFOAT spring
Institute • National and local organization memberships
Purpose B. Significant contributions to government finance
profession. Factors to be considered:
The purpose of the award is to formally recognize active
members of the Government Finance Officers Association Contributions in the areas of:
of Texas who have demonstrated leadership and who have • Mentorship
made a significant contribution to the government finance.
profession in Texas; and to encourage increased service
• Newsletter articles
and contribution to the government finance profession. • Budget reviewer program
• Conference presenter
The award recipient will be selected by a panel of judges
comprised of the three (3) past presidents and immedi-
ate past two (2) recipients of the Outstanding Finance
Officers Award. If a recipient of the Outstanding Finance Submit applications for both of these
Officers Award is also one of the three past presidents, awards by February 15, 2003 to:
the next previous Outstanding Finance Officer award re-
cipient will serve as judge. All judges are exempt from the
nomination selection. Each judge will make their ratings TML/Lee Van Gundy
independently of each other. The combined numerical rat- 1821 Rutherford Ln Ste 400
ings will be used to determine the award winner. The
most immediate past president shall serve as chairperson Austin, TX 78754-5128
of the panel of judges.
Region 9 finance officers met on February 7 in Copperas Cove to discuss various topics, led by Lewis McLain, GFOAT Executive
Director. From left to right: Elizabeth Dieterich, Bellmead; Rose Dennis, Harker Heights; Rana Lacer, Killeen; Christine Julius,
Copperas Cove; Janie Crowder, BRA; Alicia Arroya, BRA; Dolores Butler, Bellmead; Wendy Gholson, Killeen; Robert Camareno,
Copperas Cove; Julio Rodriguez, Waco; and Lee Garcia, Hewitt., Not shown: Martie Simpson Hall, Killeen.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13
D I F C A L L E N P R O C U R E M E N T J B
14 15 16 17 18
N E WY O R K A G P V T O L A Z L E
19 20 21 22 23 24
Crossword Puzzle A T R C P B A L A N C E A WA R D O L
25 26 27 28
E X E M P T I O N S S M N I A J U L Y E
Winner R U X
B P P
C A F R
V J N I C
33 34 35 36 37 38
V E L A S L M S A U E E Q E M T
Jennifer Brown, Budget S
D T C
D I S A L L O W
D U M P S
A C C R U A L I
Manager, City of Sugar 45
U T S A
H P E
N B W A
D U O
Land is the winner of last R I
A R B I T R A G E
L E D G E R
G A A P
month’s crossword puzzle. 56 57
I Q E P G R
C R E D I T O R S
She will receive $100 in 62
B A S I S
C P A
O F F
I F C R F M
gift certificates to the A T O
D E F A U L T
I P O I I
Chili’s restaurant chain. 73 74
C Y N T H I A
S I B I
R U S S
U N O P E N
We will have a second M
H E X L A D C N D
D U E T O
puzzle next month filled 84
85 86 87
L Y N N E
E D I C T S
G R A N T S
T D M
mostly with government O O
E WD C E E L I
G A L
finance related terms. The 95
I R S
D E B I T
A C H
D E B T
N S F
I D I O T
Newsletter/ Web Site 103 104 105 106 107
K Q U E A M S E F U C G F O A E R
Committee has approved a 108 109 110 111 112 113
U P S T P V S A U C T I O N M A B B O
credit of $100 to be 114 115 116 117 118 119
A C F I N A N C E R O T O M E T H I C S L
applied to the Spring 120 121 122 123 124
P I O S N T R I L E V Y S L WB L
Conference. The puzzle 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132
E M O WS G A A S N B U A H U B A U D I T S E
will be in the newsletter 133 134 135 136
D R I W U G G M U L T L A H T T R
scheduled to be available 137 138 139 140 141 142
S A N A N T O N I O T N E O U S I A
on Tuesday, March 4. 143 144 145 146
G T D WE B M A S T E R E X I T E N T R Y
147 148 149
H L T Y C S R T S A U S M A
150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157
C O V E R A G E B I T P L R I S K L D N
158 159 160
V K K P L A N O MM Z Y E L L O WB O O K
GFOAT Conference - Spring 2003 – Preliminary Program Subject To Change
“Taking Professionalism To A New Level”
Doubletree North – Austin
April 6-8, 2003
Event envelope? Consistency between employees, city management
and the city council? What about disclosure and reporting?
(Please note new format.
Also, speakers still being confirmed) 10:45 –11:10 a.m. Refreshment Break
Sunday 11:15 –12:15 a.m. Concurrent Workshops.
The two sessions with the largest number of registrants indicat-
ing their interests will be repeated. In addition, a new topic will be
12:00 – 1:15 p.m. Prayer Luncheon presented at this time slot.
1:30 - 2:45 p.m. Committee Meetings Concurrent Sessions II
3:00 – 5:30 p.m. CGFO Testing Session A: Repeat of either I-A or I-B, depen-
dent on registration counts.
3:00 - 5:30 p.m. GFOAT Executive Board Meeting
Session B: Repeat of either IB or IC, dependent
4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Registration on registration counts.
6:00 – 7:00 p.m. Welcome Reception – Double Session C: Preparing To Give a Deposition or
Tree North - Austin Courtroom Testimony
You don’t advance very far in government finance before some
event causes you to have to give a deposition. Depositions are
Monday more than facts. They often can make you look bad if you are not
prepared. This will be a mock session of your lawyer preparing
you to give a deposition so that your testimony is accurate and
8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Registration clear and isn’t destroyed during cross-examination. The lessons
will extend beyond the courtroom.
7:45 - 8:45 a.m. New Member Breakfast
A brief history of GFOAT, along with a profile of GFOAT member- 12:30 – 1:45 p.m.Luncheon/Business Meeting/
ship. GFOAT Awards Program
Diana Ortiz, GFOAT President and Director of Fiscal Operations,
9:00 - 9:30 a.m. Welcome and Opening General Denton. Election of Officers.
Session. Diana Ortiz, GFOAT President and Director of
Fiscal Operations, Denton and GFOA President Patrick Pate. Rec- 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. General Session – Legislative
ognition of Board, Committee Chairs and Regional Directors. Update.
TML Executive Director Frank Sturzl and Bennett Sandlin,
9:45 - 10:45 a.m. Concurrent Sessions I TML Legal Service Director will provide us with an up-to-date
report on legislative matters of importance to finance officers.
Session A: Capital Project Management
CIP reporting is a fundamental charge to the financial official. 3:00 - 3:15 p.m. Refreshment Break
But what about the contract negotiations, change orders, per-
formance bonds and the on-going project management chal-
lenges? Learn why finance officials need to be at the table from 3:15 - 4:45 p.m. Concurrent Workshops
beginning to end and not when a project has cratered.
Session B: Leave Policies – What Next? Workshops are meant to be a different format from
We know the cost now, but how can we fix it? What is the private the typical conference session presented by speakers.
sector doing? What are cities doing to effectively control leave There are four concurrent sessions instead of three for
policies? What is the role of the finance official, the human re- smaller groups. The speaker/moderator is assigned to
source manager and the city manager in solving this problem? introduce a topic for about half the session but will spend
the remaining portion of the time allotment encourag-
Session C: Travel Policies – Practical Details How ing the conference attendees to discuss their experi-
specific should travel policies be? How about lost receipts, ques- ences, plans or ideas.
tionable expenditures and dealing with employees who push the
Workshop I: Overview of CGFO program and an up- This session will be a return to the session taught last Spring with
date on new CGFO exams and study guides effec- an emphasis on the practical tools build into Excel.
tive after the Spring Conference. Beverly Queen Session C: Conducting Performance Reviews
What are the criteria to be used for evaluating finance personnel?
and Steve Williamson, Co-Chairs, CGFO Committee. How can the process be made less time-consuming and less pain-
What is involved in becoming a CGFO? What are the benefits? Who ful? How can the process address the ultimate result – an honest
are current CGFO certificate holders? What has changed in the dialogue between the supervisor and employee?
subject modules and how will the new study materials and exams
be phased in?
10:30 - 10:45 a.m. Refreshment Break
Workshop II: GASB Update – there really are top-
ics other than Statement 34. Closing General Session replaced by Concurrent
What is GASB up to these days? What are the newer pronounce- Sessions.
ments and how will they affect us? What is on the horizon?
Workshop III: Outsourcing – Success Stories and 10:50 - 11:50 a.m. Concurrent Sessions.
The two sessions with the largest number of registrants indicating
The Other Kind. their interests will be repeated. In addition, a new topic will be
Capsule of trends in outsourcing. Most likely candidates. What presented at this time slot.
conditions or criteria make outsourcing an optimal solution? What
are tips when developing the request for proposals?
Concurrent Session IV
Workshop IV: Justifying Transfers From Utility Funds
to the General Fund. Session A: Repeat of either III-A or III-B, depend-
Are transfers based on cost principles or just whatever it takes to ing on registration counts
balance the General Fund? Learn about the acceptable practices,
consistency and the defendable components to support the largest
transfer possible. Session B: Repeat of either III-B or III-C, depend-
ing on registration counts
Workshop V: Budget Balancing Strategies.
From the perfunctory trimming of travel and training to the most Session C: On-going Bond Disclosure Requirements
effective budget balancing measure possible, learn about the cat- Are you sure you won’t find yourself in violation of on-going disclo-
egories available and the pain-threshold associated with each. sure requirements? Learn how it may be the little things that get
you into big trouble.
6:00 – 11:00 p.m.
Dinner and a Night on Sixth Street Southwest Airlines $100 voucher drawing held
We smell a victory coming. It is difficult to find a social activity that at the end of each of the three final sessions.
suits everybody, but this will be hard to beat. We will shuttle you to Must be present to win.
Sixth Street and provide you with a $25 voucher that can be used
at Hard Rock Café, Dan McKlusky's, The Old Pecan Street Café, or
The Old Spaghetti Warehouse, all of which are restaurants on or Post Conference Workshops
around Sixth Street. Two 50-passenger buses will provide continu-
ous shuttle service from the DoubleTree North Hotel to Sixth Street. The Public Funds Investment Act requires Chief Financial Of-
The first shuttle will leave the hotel at 6:00 p.m., the last shuttle will ficers, Treasurers, and Investment Officers to receive 10 hours of
leave Sixth Street at 10:30 p.m. investment training every two years. In addition, new Investment
Officers are required to receive 10 hours of training within the first
12 months after assuming their duties. A new two-year training
Tuesday cycle began on September 1, 2001. Completion of this two-part
workshop satisfies this requirement.
8:00 - 8:50 a.m. Tuesday, April 8 th. 1:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Post-Conference
Mentoring Breakfast and Presentation From The Investment Training – Part One ($115) Richard Long will be the
Scholarship/Foundation Committee and skit from trainer. Topics include: Public Investment Act Compliance, Devel-
opment of Investment Strategies, Safekeeping and Custody, Money
the Ethics Committee. Market Mutual Funds and Local Government Investment Pools
9:00 - 10:30 a.m. Concurrent Sessions III Wednesday, April 9th (includes lunch), 9:00 a.m. – 2:15
p.m. Post-Conference Investment Training Part Two ($115), Su-
san Anderson and Corrine Steeger will be the trainers. Topics will
Session A: Hotel/Motel Tax Revenues include: Investment Policies, Investing Bond Proceeds, Cash Fore-
casting, Investing Game.
What can you spend theses monies on and how do you convey that
the message to the CMO and council? Case studies will be used to GASB 34 Workshop: Implementation issues. This workshop
illustrate the do’s and don’ts. ($115) led by experts at Deloitte & Touche will focus on implementa-
tion details especially for entities obligation to be in compliance with
Session B: Excel Spreadsheets For Analysis & Man- GASB 34 in the current fiscal year. Tuesday, April 8th 1:00 p.m.
agement Reports – 5:30 p.m.
Note: Online registration for the conference and post-confer-
ence workshops will be available by the Friday, February 14, 2003.
The Government Finance
Officers Association of Texas
When: April 6-8, 2003
Where: DoubleTree Hotel - Austin
Hotel Information: The DoubleTree Hotel is located at 6505 Interstate Highway
35 North. The hotel has extended a room rate of $109
single; $129 double. In order to receive this special rate,
your reservation must be made by Friday, March 16, 2003.
Please call the DoubleTree at 512-454-3737 and ask for the
GFOAT Spring Conference room block to make your hotel
Airfare Discounts: To take advantage of Southwest Airlines group discounts,
reservations must be made by calling Southwest Airlines
Group Desk at 1-800-433-5368, Monday – Friday, from
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Call no later than five days prior to
your first travel day and refer to Identifier Code X7761.
Questions: Call TML’s Program Development Department at
512-231-7400 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Detailed information with registration materials will be available in a few days. Mark
your calendars and make your travel arrangements now for discounted rates.
Conference Planner 2003 Texas Tech Universtity/Robert J. Freeman’s
• Public Funds Investment Act training Accounting Seminars:
conducted by the Center For Public Manage- Governmental Accounting & Financial Reporting/
ment, UNT. For online registration or more
Update: Governmental Accounting, Reporting & Auditing
information, contact Corrine Steeger at 940-
369-7843 or go to www.unt.edu/cpm. Dates/
Location/PFIA Hours of Credit listed below: • South Padre Island: Governmental Accounting &
Financial Reporting - June 2-4; UPDATE: Governmen-
• February 19, 2003 Austin (5); tal Accounting, Reporting & Auditing - June 5.
• February 20-21, 2003 Arlington (10);
• April 8-9, 2003 GFOAT Post Conf. (10);
• June 12-13, 2003 Arlington (10);
• Houston: Governmental Accounting & Financial Re-
porting - July 28-30; UPDATE: Governmental Ac
• August 28-29, 2003 Arlington (10).
counting, Reporting & Auditing - July 31.
• TML 4th Annual Riley Fletcher Basic Munici-
pal Law Seminar Austin, February 21, 2003. • Austin: Governmental Accounting & Financial Reporti
ng - August 11-13; UPDATE: Governmental Account
• TCMA William “King” Cole Series – II: ing, Reporting & Auditing - August 14.
Irving, March 26-28, 2003.
• GFOAT Spring Conference, Austin, April 6-8,
• Addison: Governmental Accounting & Financial Re-
2003. porting - August 18-20, 2003 UPDATE: Governmen-
tal Accounting, Reporting & Auditing - August 21.
• TML Legislative Update, Austin, April 14, 2003.
Go to http://cpd.ba.ttu.edu/ for more in-
• Spending Hotel-Motel Tax Money Workshop formation about these seminars, out-of-
Austin, May 8, 2003. state locations, costs and registration.
• TML Economic Development Workshop New Members
Austin, May 9, 2003.
• Noelle Jones, Finance Program
• GFOA Annual Conference, New York City, May
Manager, City of Round Rock.
• Southwest School of Government Finance, • Jerry Galloway, Assistant Finance
Texas Tech, Lubbock, May 19-23, 2003. Director/Controller, City of Round
• Innovation Group - National Conference, Rock.
Plano, May 29-31, 2003. www.ig.org.
• Teresa Lemons, Director of Finance
• TML Legislative Wrap Up, June 23, 2003.
& Administration, TxDot, Texas
• TCMA Annual Conference Lubbock, June 26- Turnpike Authority Division.
• GFOAT Fall Conference Corpus Christi, October • Mary Sekula, Budget & Insurance
15-17, 2003. Coordinator, City of Kerrville.
• TML Annual Conference San Antonio, Nov. 19-
22, 2003. • Tiffany Orandi, Accountant, City of
• Jennie Eastman, Budget &
• Debra Forte’ is now Debra Feazelle and has
just been appointed as the new city manager Procurement Manager, Town of
for the City of La Porte. Addison.
• Eric Olmedo, Senior Management Analyst, City • Ellen Hicks, City Clerk/Treasurer,
of Carrollton is the new Budget Officer, City of City of Somerset.
THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS!
First Southwest Company
Bank of New York and The George Link, Jr. Foundation
TexSTAR (First Southwest & JPMorgan Chase)
American Appraisal Associates
American General Financial Group/VALIC
Carter & Burgess, Inc.
Deloitte & Touche
A.G. Edwards & Sons, Inc.
First Tennessee Bank Capital Markets
Goverment Resources Associates, LLC
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.
MBIA MuniServices Company
MBIA Texas Class
Moody’s Investors Service
Municipal Advisory Council of Texas
Pattillo, Brown & Hill
Public Financial Management, Inc./TexasTERM
Public-Sector Solutions (formerly USL Financials)
Rylander, Clay & Opitz, LLP
Standard & Poor’s
Weaver & Tidwell, L.L.P.
Bank of Texas (New Sponsor!)
First Southwest Asset Management, Inc.
First Tennessee Capital Markets
Houston Community Bank, NA
Padgett Stratemann & Company, LLP
Patterson & Associates
Reed, Stowe & Yanke, LLC
Happy Thanksgiving!!! TML Intergovernmental Risk Pool
City Of Pasadena - Accountant-general Ledger. Upper Trinity Regional Water District - Account-
www.ci.pasadena.tx.us. Closing Date: 3/24/03. Salary: ing Manager. www.utrwd.com. Closing Date: 2/28/
$28,000-32,000 / YEAR. This position will work with the 03. Salary: Monthly Starting Salary (DOQ): $4,606 to
City Controller. Key job responsibilities include: Process $6,100. Supervises the accounting staff by planning,
and post entries to the general ledger; assist in prepara- directing, coordinating, reviewing and approving work
tion for the yearly audit: Assist with yearly budget pro- assignments related to accounts payable, accounts re-
cess: Various monthly and yearly reporting/reconcilia- ceivable, account reconciliations, journal entries, pay-
tion of general ledger accounts: Assist with general fi- roll administration and project accounting. Coordinates
nancial work and special projects: Minimal secretarial year-end audit activities and is responsible for the prepa-
duties as required by the City Controller and staff: Main- ration of the CAFR. Ensures accounting and finance
tain City Controller files: Monthly billing of miscellaneous
activities are in compliance with generally accepted ac-
revenue sources: Perform other duties as assigned. High
counting principles with regard to financial reporting,
degree of skill in Windows environment to include MS/
records management and legal disclosures. Respon-
Excel and MS/Word. Strong written and verbal commu-
sible for SEC Continuing Disclosure coordination. Re-
nication skills. Knowledge of computerized accounting
sponsible for supervision of all banking and investment
systems and procedures. Proficiency with 10-key calcu-
lator. Associate Degree in Accounting or 12 college ac- activities. Develops, recommends and implements in-
counting hours combined with two years of accounting ternal policies and procedures related to accounting
experience (preferably in government). City offers health and finance. General qualifications include; a Bachelor’s
and dental insurance, TMRS retirement, and educational Degree in accounting, finance, or a related field and
reimbursement. Submit resume: City of Pasadena, Attn: five years of similar work related experience. Govern-
Tammy/Finance, P O Box 672, Pasadena TX 77501; FAX: ment and/or public utility accounting experience pre-
713-477-6955 Attn: Tammy Lehew; ferred. Should be competent in the use of Microsoft
email@example.com. Office computer software. Experience with Incode/
Invision accounting software a plus. CPA preferred. Fax
resume to “Personnel Manager” at (214) 222-7323, or
City Of Pasadena - Accountant-accounts Payable. mail to UTRWD, Attn: Personnel Manager, P.O. Box 305,
www.ci.pasadena.tx.us. Closing Date: 3/24/03. Salary: Lewisville, TX 75067. Position is currently considered
$28,000-32,000 / YEAR. This position will work with the open until filled.
Accounts Payable. Key job responsibilities include: Pro-
cessing of Accounts Payable – including coding of invoices,
entry of purchase orders, monitor budget compliance, City of Lufkin - Director of Finance.
prepare and process check runs, and all related pro- www.cityoflufkin.com. Closing Date: 3/17/03. Salary:
cessing requirements; Maintain vendor files and all re- Starting salary to $70,000 DOQ. Lufkin (Pop. 32,709) is
lated accounts payable data; issue 1099s at year end; nestled in the beautiful piney woods and lakes of Deep
process and post daily entries; Process and post entries East Texas. Lufkin’s economy is industrial based with
to the general ledger; assist in preparation for the yearly several major national companies operating within the
audit: Assist with yearly budget process: Various monthly City limits. Lufkin is seeking an individual who is dedi-
and yearly reporting/reconciliation of general ledger ac- cated to working with a team. The successful applicant
counts: Closely monitor renewal dates and status of an- must be an individual who holds honor, integrity and
nual contracts; Assist with general financial work and professionalism preeminent in rank. The Director of
special project; Perform other duties as assigned. High Finance will provide administrative direction to the Ac-
degree of skill in Windows environment to include MS/ counting, Purchasing, Utility Billing, Cash Management,
Excel and MS/Word. Strong written and verbal commu- Investments, Budget, and Financial Reporting. The suc-
nication skills. Knowledge of computerized accounting cessful applicant will hold a Bachelor’s Degree, Mas-
systems and procedures. Proficiency with 10-key calcu- ters preferred, in Business, Accounting or Finance or a
lator. Associate Degree in Accounting or 12 college ac- related field and will have five years or more of pro-
counting hours combined with two years of accounting gressively responsible related experience. CPA is de-
experience (preferably in government). City offers health sired. Information may be obtained on the City of Lufkin’s
and dental insurance, TMRS retirement, and educational website at www.cityoflufkin.com. Send resume’ to City
reimbursement. Submit resume to City of Pasadena, Attn: of Lufkin, Director Human Resources, P.O. Drawer 190,
Tammy/Finance, P O Box 672, Pasadena TX 77501; FAX: Lufkin, Texas 75902-0190; Fax: 1-936-633-0408; email:
713-477-6955 Attn: Tammy Lehew; tllehew@ci.
City of Harker Heights - Director of Finance. City of Rowlett. Accountant II. Closing Date: 2/21/
www.watersconsulting.com. Closing Date: 3/6/03. Sal- 03, www.ci.rowlett.tx.us. Salary: $35,817 - $53,372 DOE
ary: To the mid-70’s DOQ. Harker Heights (Pop. 21,000) w/benefits package. Rowlett has a newly created posi-
is looking for an experienced local government finance tion of Accountant II in the Finance Department. The
manager with a good understanding of modern govern- City of Rowlett (population 48,000) is located on Lake
mental accounting theory, principles and practices and a Ray Hubbard in northeast Dallas County, twenty miles
solid background of successful accomplishments in a se- from downtown Dallas. Rowlett is a dynamic growing
nior financial management position, to serve in the posi- city with outstanding potential. Rowlett is one of the top
tion of Director of Finance. The Director of Finance pro- ten Metroplex cities showing the largest population
vides administrative direction for the Finance Department growth, yet offers a relaxed lakeside atmosphere. Ma-
including accounting, payroll, data processing, utility cus- jor Duties and Responsibilities: Ability to prepare a wide
tomer service and purchasing, and serves as the chief variety of financial statements, reports and analysis skill
financial advisor to the City Manager and City Council. in use of automated management information systems.
Director is responsible for managing Department with 5 Skill in using IBM AS/400 experience. Responsible for
full time positions and a budget of $362,000. The City complying and monitoring City’s fixed asset records,
has a total of 135 full time employees, a budget of $15.5 ensuring compliance with GAAP. Assists in processing
million and has received the GFOA award for excellence contracts and payments to contractors relating to CIP
in budgeting and accounting for 8 years in a row. Posi- projects, resolve CIP related issues. Prepares reports
tion requires a Bachelor’s Degree in accounting, finance, for monitoring CIP activity. Reconciles general ledger to
business or public administration or a closely related field various assigned accounts, researches and analyzes
and five years of progressively responsible financial man- variances. Monitors transactions postings for certain
agement experience, preferably with municipal govern- funds and accounts under direct responsibility. Assists
ment. A CPA is preferred. For more information, go to in preparation of audit work papers and segments of
http://www.ci.Harker Heights.tx.us. For more informa- the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report. Uses main-
tion on the position, go to http:// frame and/or micro-computers to gather, compile and
www.watersconsulting.com. Send resume’ to: G. Chris extract information for accounting purposes. Prepares
Hartung, The Waters Consulting Group, Inc., 2695 Villa and monitors interfund transfers. Ability to work and
Creek Dr., Ste 104, Dallas, TX 75234-7328; communicate effectively with other City employees, man-
972.481.1950; Fax: 972.481.1951; Toll free: agement and the public. Other duties as may be as-
877.356.2924; firstname.lastname@example.org. signed. Minimum Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree from
an accredited college or university in accounting or fi-
nance related area. Governmental accounting preferred.
At least 3 years experience in financial analysis (prefer-
City of Azle - Finance Director. www.ci.azle.tx.us.
ably governmental accounting). Must have a valid Texas
Closing Date: 3/4/03. Salary: DOQ. Under the direction
driver’s license with an acceptable driving record. Will
of the City Manager, the Director of Finance will provide
work 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Abil-
administrative direction for the Finance Department in- ity to work beyond normal working hours as needed.
cluding Accounting, Payroll, Accounts Payable, Cash Man- Please submit resume to: Janet Goad, Director of Hu-
agement, Investments, Utility Billing, Financial Report- man Resources, City of Rowlett, P.O. Box 99, Rowlett,
ing, Purchasing, Information Technology, Library and Mu- TX, 75030, , 972-412-6113 office, 972-412-6183 fax.
nicipal Court. The position requires a Bachelor’s Degree
in Business, Accounting or Finance or a related field, and
5 or more years of professional experience in accounting City of Deer Park, Accountant I. Closing Date: 3/7/
or financial management, of which at least 3 years in- 03. www.ci.deer-park.tx.us. Salary: $ 30,160 beginning.
cluded the supervision of professional level staff. Related Works under the general supervision of the Director of
experience, as Finance Director in a public agency and / Finance. Assists in the preparation of all internal and
external financial statements; prepares bank reconcili-
or experience with InCode’s InVision software highly de-
ations, account analyses, subsidiary ledger reconcilia-
sirable. Submit resume to: City of Azle, Attn: Human Re-
tions, and other accounting related tasks as assigned
sources, 613 SE Parkway, Azle TX 76020.
by the Director of Finance or the Senior Accountant.
GFOAT BOARD & REPRESENTATIVES
GFOAT BOARD Don Jennings, Director of Finance, Perryton
GFOAT FOUNDATION BOARD
Phone 806-435-4014; Fax 806-435-2490
PRESIDENT Charles Cox, Finance Director, Farmers Branch
Diana Ortiz, Director of Fiscal Operations, Denton 972-919-2518; Fax 972-919-2688
940-349-8224; Fax 940-349-7206 SOUTH REPRESENTATIVE
Jerry Dale, Director of Finance, McAllen email@example.com
Phone 956-972-7185; Fax 956-972-7177
PRESIDENT-ELECT Camelia Browder, DeSoto
Cynthia Alexander, Finance Director, LaPorte AT-LARGE REPRESENTATIVE 972-230-9688; Fax 972-230-5795
281-471-5020; Fax 281-471-7168 Roger Roecker, Dir. of Administrative Services firstname.lastname@example.org
281-996-3211; Fax 281-482-6491 SECRETARY/TREASURER
IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT email@example.com Cynthia Alexander, Finance Director, LaPorte
Rosie Vela Director of Finance, Richardson 281-471-5020; Fax 281-471-7168
972-744-4144; Fax 972-744-5811 firstname.lastname@example.org
email@example.com OTHER REPRESENTATIVES Member
TREASURER Kathy DuBose, Assistant City Manager, Denton
TML BOARD REPRESENTATIVE 940-349-8288; Fax 940-349-7206
Glenn Windsor, Finance Director, Deer Park Kathy DuBose, Assistant City Manager, Denton
281-478-7225, 281-478-7217 (FAX) firstname.lastname@example.org
940-349-8288; Fax 940-349-7206
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Member
SECRETARY Rosie Vela Director of Finance, Richardson
GFOA REPRESENTATIVE 972-744-4144; Fax 972-744-5811
Linda Mercer, Dir. of Finance, Admin, & Grants, Gonzales Greg Wilmore, Director of Finance, Cleburne
830-672-2815; Fax 830-672-2813 email@example.com
817-645-0911; Fax 817-645-0990
REGIONAL DIRECTORS GFOA COMMITTEES
2 AMARILLO Accounting, Auditing & Financial Reporting
7 ALAMO 12 RIO GRANDE Bob Scott, City of Carrollton
Steve Bartels, Hereford Cynthia Barr, Alamo Heights Alicia Cano, Alamo
806-363-7102; Fax 806-363-7106 210-822-3331; Fax 210-822-8197 956-787-0006; Fax 956-787-1160 Budget & Management
firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Anita Thetford, City of Hurst
Phil Scheps, City of Houston
3 CAPROCK 8 FORT WORTH Karen Rhodes, City of Plano
13 NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS
Leslie Cox, Lubbock Larry Koonce, North Richland Hills Anna Mosqueda, City of Denton
Camelia Browder, DeSoto
806-775-2376; Fax 806-775-2051 817-427-6167; Fax 817-427-6151 972-230-9688; Fax 972-230-5795
firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Cash Management Committee
firstname.lastname@example.org Diana Ortiz, City of Denton
4 PERMIAN BASIN 9 HEART OF TEXAS 14 SAN JACINTO Debt & Fiscal Policy
Troy Gifford, Midland Elizabeth Dieterich, Bellmead Roger Roecker, Friendswood Alex Hinojosa, San Antonio Water System
915-685-7210; Fax 915-685-7223 254-799-2426; Fax 254-799-5969 281-996-3211; Fax 281-482-6491 Terry Burke, Ernst & Young
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Rosie Vela, City of Richardson
Cynthia Alexander, City of La Porte
5 RED RIVER 10 HIGHLAND LAKES 15 TYLER-LONGVIEW
Jim Dockery, Wichita Falls Charles Cryan, College Station Retirement & Benefits Administration
Sandra Ives, Palestine
940-761-7462; Fax 940-761-7470 979-764-6364; Fax 979-764-3899 Jim Keyes, City of Fort Worth
903-731-8404; Fax 903-731-8486
firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
GFOA Executive Board
6 HUB OF TEXAS 11 COASTAL BEND Max Patterson, Houston Firefighters’ Relief
Mindy Whisenhunt, Abilene Debra Keller, Corpus Christi Airport and Retirement Fund;
Max Duplant, Beaumont Charles Cox, Finance Director, City of
915-676-6326; Fax 915-676-6285 361-289-0171 x1258; Fax 361-289-0251 409-880-3767; Fax 409-880-3132 Farmers Branch
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
ETHICS NEWSLETTER & WEB SITE
Co-Chair Rebecca Koo, The Colony Co-Chair Monette Fisher, Springtown Co-Chair Nell Lange, City of Frisco Co-Chair Kent Pfeil, Richardson
972-625-1756; Fax 972-624-2286 817-220-4834 x234; Fax 817-523-3179 972-335-5555; 972-377-9068 972-744-4145; Fax 972-744-5811
firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
FINANCIAL REPORTING & REGULATORY RESPONSE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT (CGFO)
Bob Scott, Carrollton Co-Chair Beverly Queen, Bedford Co-Chair Steve Williams, Flower Mound
972-466-3103; Fax 972-466-3535 817-952-2174; Fax 817-952-2454 972-539-6006; Fax 972-355-3741
firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
LEGISLATIVE PROFESSIONAL AWARENESS
Anna Mosqueda, Denton Co-Chair Bret Starr, Hurst Co-Chair Co-Chair Keith Nelson, NTTA Co-Chair Rodney Gonzales, San Marcos
940-349-8127; Fax 940-349-7206 817-788-7014; Fax 817-788-7024 214-522-6200; Fax 214-528-4826 512-393-8176; Fax 512-392-4612
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
MEMBERSHIP PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT
Co-Chair Roger Roecker, Friendswood Cynthia Alexander, La Porte Co-Chair Corrine Steeger, UNT/CPM Co-Chair
281-996-3211; Fax 281-482-6491 281-471-5020; Fax 281-471-7168 940-369-7950; Fax 940-369-8771
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Co-Chair Leslie Cox, City of Lubbock SCHOLARSHIP, FELLOWSHIP & FOUNDATION
806-775-2376, 806-775-3033 (FAX) Bill Pollock, Highland Park Chair
firstname.lastname@example.org 214-559-9442; Fax 214-559-9348
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR TML AFFILIATE SUPPORT NEWSLETTER PUBLISHER WEBMASTER CGFO CONTRACTOR
Lewis F. McLain, Jr. Lee Van Gundy/Joe Foster Lewis F. McLain, Jr. Kenneth P. McLain Dr. Wes Clarke/UNT
972-418-6536 512-231-7400 972-418-6536 817-713-5705 940-565-4870
Fax 972-418-1830 Fax 512-231-7494 Fax 972-418-1830 email@example.com Fax 940-565-4466
ExecDir@gfoat.org firstname.lastname@example.org ExecDir@gfoat.org email@example.com