Glossary

The following list of terms and definitions is taken from the City of Atlanta’s FY2023 Budget Book.

TermDefinition
ActivityAn action or set of actions directed at a specific purpose or purposes.
Annual BudgetA budget developed and enacted to apply to a single fiscal year.
AnticipationsSee “Estimated Receipts”
AppropriationThe legal authorization given by the City Council to make expenditures and incur obligations using city funds.
Base BudgetThe budget required to maintain the current level of service in the succeeding fiscal year. During budget development, a distinction is made between the base budget required to fund a continuation of existing service levels and program change requests for additional resources for new activities or change to services levels.
Budget CommissionEstablished in the Charter of the City of Atlanta, the Budget Commission is composed of the Mayor, Chairman of the Finance Executive Committee, the Chief Financial Officer, and two members of Council, and sets the levels of estimated revenue for budget purposes.
Cost CenterA segregated set of expenditure accounts within a fund, separated for the purpose of identifying specific resources that will be applied toward a specific goal.
Debt ServicePayment of interest and principal on an obligation resulting from the issuance of bonds.
EffectivenessThe extent to which the outcome of an action or set of actions produces the desired results or impact.
EfficiencyA ratio between input (resources) and output (production).
Enterprise FundA fund which pays for its costs of operations from user fees and does not generally receive property tax support.
Estimated ReceiptsThe legally authorized level of revenue expected to be received from individual revenue sources, as set by the Budget Commission. Generally, estimated revenues from any source for any given budget year cannot exceed ninety-nine percent (99%) of the actual prior year receipts. Estimated receipts are also referred to as “Anticipations.”
Fiscal YearA twelve-month period (July 1 through June 30) at the beginning of which the city implements a new budget based on expected revenues and expenditures, and at the end of which the city determines its financial position and the results of its operations.
FundA self-balancing set of accounts set aside and accounted for separately for the purpose of restricting specific revenues that are then spent for a specific set of activities.
Fund BalanceThe excess of an entity’s assets over its liabilities also known as excess revenues over expenditures.
Internal Services FundA fund used to account for the financing of goods or services provided by one department or agency to other departments or agencies, on a cost-reimbursement basis.
LOSTFulton County imposes a 1% Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) which is shared between the county and the municipalities within the county based on population.
Major FundFunds are classified as major if the following conditions are met: Total assets, liabilities, revenues or expenditures/expenses of the individual governmental or enterprise fund are at least 10% of the corresponding total of all funds of that category; and are at least 5% of the total for all governmental and enterprise funds combined.
Management ObjectiveA specific, measurable things to be accomplished which have the characteristic of being able to be controlled or affected by management decisions and direction.
MeasureAn absolute indicator of the attainment of an objective. May be simply a determinable result or may consist of statistical data.
MillA measure of the rate of ad valorem (property taxation, representing one ($1) dollar of tax per one thousand ($1,000) dollars of assessed property value).
MOSTA 1% City of Atlanta Municipal Option Sales Tax (MOST) is collected for retail sales and use occurring within the incorporated city limits of Atlanta. The purpose of this tax is to assist with funding renovations to the water and sewer system.
ObjectiveSpecific, measurable thing to be accomplished.
Operating BudgetThe annual budget for the routine, ongoing activities and work program of an organized unit, as opposed to budgets which may also be established for capital projects, grant funded projects, and other activities of a non-permanent nature.
ProgramA set of activities under a specific organization.
Program ChangeA proposed activity which is not presently in an organization’s work program, nor funded in its budget.
Proprietary FundA set of segregated revenue and expenditure accounts, set up for the purpose of showing net income, financial position, and changes in financial position. Enterprise Fund and the Internal Service Fund are Proprietary Funds.
ReserveAn account used to set aside and earmark monies for future use. Monies must be appropriated from the reserve account to an expenditure account for a specific purpose before they can be spent.
RevenueThe taxes, fees, charges, special assessments, grants, and other funds collected and received by the city in order to support the services provided.
User FeesThe payment of a fee for direct receipt of a public service by the person benefiting from the service.
WorkloadA measure of quantity produced, processed, handled, or otherwise acted upon or with by an organizational unit. Workload is preferably indicated with respect to a
specific, identifiable period of time.
Work ProgramThe detailed set of things to be accomplished, within specified time periods, for an organizational unit.

Care to share your thoughts on the budget with us?

X