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Los Angeles COE |  BP  3100  Business and Noninstructional Operations

Budget   

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The County Board recognizes its critical authority and responsibility for adopting a sound budget for each fiscal year that is aligned with and reflects LACOE's vision, goals, priorities, and local control and accountability plan (LCAP). The LACOE budget shall guide administrative decisions and actions throughout the year and shall serve as a tool for monitoring the fiscal health of LACOE.

(cf. 0000 - Vision)

(cf. 0460 - Local Control and Accountability Plan)

(cf. 3000 - Concepts and Roles)

(cf. 3300 - Expenditures and Purchases)

(cf. 3460 - Financial Reports and Accountability)

(cf. 9000 - Role of the County Board)

The budget shall show a complete plan and itemized statement of all proposed expenditures and all estimated revenues for the following fiscal year, together with a comparison of revenues and expenditures for the current fiscal year. (Education Code 1621)

The County Board shall adopt the budget only after a local control and accountability plan (LCAP) developed pursuant to Education Code 52067 or an annual update to the LCAP is in place for the budget year. Expenditures necessary to implement the LCAP or the annual update during the subsequent fiscal year shall be included in the budget.

(cf. 0460 - Local Control and Accountability Plan)

The County Board recognizes the authority of the County Superintendent or designee to assign funds in the various fund balances. Any changes in the assignment of funds must be reported to the County Board at the next regular Board meeting or at a subsequent budget amendment presentation for approval.

Administration of the Budget

Upon the adoption of the final budget, responsibility for administration of the budget shall rest with the County Superintendent. The County Superintendent may delegate to other persons responsibility for specific performance.

In administration and control of the budget, the following shall govern:

1. All expenditures of funds for the employment and assignment of personnel, for purchases, for the securing of contracted services, and other actions related to the budget shall be in compliance with the laws of the State of California, the adopted policies of the County Board, and other applicable rules and regulations.

2. Expenditures or the incurring of liabilities shall be limited to the amount of the appropriation provided in the various major objects of expenditure classifications of the budget providing for such expenditures or liabilities and including additions, reductions, or transfers properly authorized by action or policy of the County Board.

Budget Development and Adoption Process

The County Superintendent or designee shall establish an annual budget development process and calendar in accordance with the single budget adoption process described in Education Code 1621.

In order to provide guidance in the development of the budget, the County Superintendent shall annually establish budget priorities based on identified LACOE needs and goals and on realistic projections of available funds.

The County Superintendent or designee shall oversee the preparation of a proposed budget for approval by the County Board and shall involve appropriate staff in the development of budget projections.

The County Board encourages public input in the budget development process and shall hold public hearings and meetings. The hearing shall occur at the same meeting as the public hearing on the LCAP in accordance with Education Code 1620.

(cf. 9320 - Meetings and Notices)

(cf. 9322 - Agenda/Meeting Materials)

(cf. 9323 - Meeting Conduct)

The budget that is formally adopted by the County Board shall be in the format prescribed by the Superintendent of Public Instruction. The County Superintendent or designee may supplement this format with additional information as necessary to effectively communicate the budget to the County Board, staff, and public.

Budget Criteria and Standards

The County Superintendent or designee shall develop a budget in accordance with criteria and standards adopted by the State Board of Education (SBE). (Education Code 33127, 33128, 33128.3, 33129; 5 CCR 15440-15451)

The budget shall provide that funding received through state supplemental and concentration grants pursuant to Education Code 1622 shall be used in accordance with regulations adopted by the County Office of Education with the purpose of increasing or improving services for students who are English learners, eligible for free or reduced-price meals, and/or foster youth at least in proportion to the increase to the County Office of Education's revenue generated from such funds.

(cf. 3553 - Free and Reduced Price Meals)

(cf. 6173.1 - Education for Foster Youth)

(cf. 6174 - Education for English Language Learners)

The County Board may establish other budget assumptions or parameters which may take into consideration the stability of funding sources, legal requirements and constraints on the use of funds, anticipated increases and/or decreases in the cost of services and supplies, categorical program requirements, and any other factors necessary to ensure that the budget is a realistic plan for County Office of Education revenues and expenditures.

(cf. 2210 - Administrative Discretion Regarding Board Policy)

(cf. 3110 - Transfer of Funds)

Consistent with the Criteria and Standards for Fiscal Solvency adopted by the State Board of Education, the County Office maintains a Reserve for Economic Uncertainties to safeguard the County Office's financial stability. The minimum recommended reserve for LACOE is 2% of the County School Service Fund expenditures. (Education Code 33128.3; 5 CCR 15450). To protect the County Office against unforeseen circumstances such as revenue shortfalls and unanticipated expenditures, the Board intends to maintain a minimum unassigned fund balance which includes a reserve for economic uncertainties equal to 10% of general fund expenditures and other financing uses.

If the unassigned fund balance falls below this level due to an emergency situation, unexpected expenditures, or revenue shortfalls, the Board shall develop a plan to recover the fund balance which may include dedicating new unrestricted revenues, reducing expenditures, and/or increasing revenues or pursuing other funding sources.

(cf. 2210 - Administrative Discretion Regarding Board Policy)

Fund Balance

LACOE shall classify fund balances in compliance with Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) Statement 54:

Long-Term Financial Obligations

LACOE's current-year budget and multi-year projections shall include adequate provisions for addressing LACOE's long-term financial obligations, including, but not limited to, long-term obligations resulting from collective bargaining agreements, financing of facilities projects, unfunded or future liability for retiree benefits, and accrued workers' compensation claims.

(cf. 4141/4241 - Collective Bargaining Agreement)

(cf. 4143/4243 - Negotiations/Consultation)

(cf. 4154/4254/4354 - Health and Welfare Benefits)

(cf. 7210 - Facilities Financing)

(cf. 9250 - Remuneration, Reimbursement and Other Benefits)

When the County Superintendent or designee presents a report to the County Board on the estimated accrued but unfunded cost of OPEBs (other postemployment benefits) and workers' compensation claims, the County Board shall disclose, as a separate agenda item at the same meeting, whether or not it will reserve in the budget sufficient amounts to fund the present value of accrued but unfunded workers' compensation claims or if it is otherwise decreasing the amount in its OPEBs and/or workers' compensation reserve fund. The County Board shall annually certify to the Superintendent of Public Instruction the amount, if any, that the County Board has decided to reserve in the budget for these costs. (Education Code 42140 and 42141)

Budget Amendments

Whenever revenues and expenditures change significantly throughout the year, the County Superintendent or designee shall recommend to the Board for approval budget amendments to ensure accurate projections of LACOE's net ending balance. When final figures for the prior-year budget are available, this information shall be used as soon as possible to update the current-year budget's beginning balance and projected revenues and expenditures.

In addition, budget amendments shall be submitted for County Board approval when the state budget is adopted, collective bargaining agreements are accepted, LACOE income declines, increased revenues or unanticipated savings are made available to LACOE, program proposals are significantly different from those approved during budget adoption, and/or other significant changes occur that impact budget projection.

County School Services Fund Budget

The County School Service Fund budget shall be a single-fund budget which is adopted by the Board and provides for all of the purposes for which the County School Service Fund will need money. The budget shall include funds for the County Board, the County Committee on School District Organization, the Office of the County Superintendent of Schools, and all functions supported in whole or in part with apportionments from, contracts with, or grants from the State of California, the federal government, or any other public or private agency.

Legal Reference: Education Code 1600 et seq.

Preparation of the Budget

The County Superintendent shall be responsible for the preparation and recommendation of the budget to the County Board annually in accordance with these policies, and with the laws and regulations of the State of California. The County Superintendent may delegate to appropriate personnel specific responsibility for preparation and administration of the budget.

Estimate of Financial Needs

The budget presented to the County Board shall represent the most accurate possible estimate of the educational, organizational, and financial needs of LACOE as identified by the County Superintendent in cooperation with the staff.

The budget shall provide for the best programs possible within the financial resources available.

Funds

The single-fund budget shall include the County School Service Fund.

Other funds for which the County Superintendent is responsible but which are not included as part of the single-fund budget are: the State Teachers' Retirement System Fund, the Public Employees' Retirement System Fund, the Payroll Clearance Fund, the Pooled Investment Interest Fund, the Legal Claims Fund, the Charter School Fund, the Charter School Holding Fund, and the Alternative Retirement Fund, the State School Fund, and the Control Accounts Fund.

Budget Calendar

No later than December 15, the County Superintendent shall present to the County Board for its review a calendar of dates by which adoption of any portion of the budget for the next ensuing fiscal year shall occur.

No later than January 9, the County Board shall adopt a budget calendar. The calendar shall include reference to adoption of the preliminary and of the final budget.

The calendar shall be used as a guide and, except for dates specified by law, may be modified by the County Board as circumstances warrant.

Definitions

Apportionment - Allocation of state or federal aid, district taxes, or other moneys among LEAs or other governmental units

Appropriation - An authorization, granted by the governing board, to make expenditures and to incur obligations for special purposes. An appropriation is usually limited in purpose, amount, and the time period during which it may be expended

Assignment - Funds set aside for a specific purpose from the unassigned ending fund balance

Budget Amendment - A budget revision(s) in which net ending balances are recalculated and brought to the Board for approval

Budget Revision(s) - Net increases and decreases to the budget

Legal Reference:

EDUCATION CODE

1240 Duties of county superintendent of schools

33127-33131 Standards and criteria for local budgets and expenditures

35035 Powers and duties of superintendent

35161 Powers and duties, generally, of governing boards

1620-1630 Budget requirements

52060-52077 Local control and accountability plan

Management Resources:

CSBA PUBLICATIONS

CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION PUBLICATIONS

California School Accounting Manual

FISCAL CRISIS AND MANAGEMENT ASSISTANCE TEAM PUBLICATIONS

Fiscal Oversight Guide for AB 1200, AB 2756 and Subsequent Related Legislation, September 2006

GOVERNMENT FINANCE OFFICERS ASSOCIATION

Best Practice: Appropriate Level of Unrestricted Fund Balance in the General Fund, 2009

GOVERNMENTAL ACCOUNTING STANDARDS BOARD STATEMENTS

WEB SITES

CSBA: http://www.csba.org

Association of California School Administrators: http://www.acsa.org

California Department of Education, Finance and Grants: http://www.cde.ca.gov/fg

California Department of Finance: http://www.dof.ca.gov

Fiscal Crisis and Management Assistance Team: http://www.fcmat.org

Government Finance Officers Association: http://www.gfoa.org

Governmental Accounting Standards Board: http://www.gasb.org

Legislative Analyst's Office: http://www.lao.ca.gov

School Services of California, Inc.: http://www.sscal.com

Policy LOS ANGELES COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION

adopted: June 18, 2019 Downey, California