BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OF THE COUNTY OF SANTA BARBARA

STATE OF CALIFORNIA

CLERK OF THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

M I N U T E 0 R D E R

August 15, 1995, in the a.m.

Present: Supervisors Naomi Schwartz, Jeanne Graffy, William B. Wallace, Timothy J. Staffel and Thomas Urbanske and Zandra Cholmondeley, Clerk (Martinez)

Supervisor Staffel in the Chair

RE: County Administrator - Approve recommendations regarding the response to the 1994-95 Grand Jury Interim Final Report on "Santa Barbara County Budget Planning and Control," as follows:

a) Accept reports from Auditor-Controller and County Administrator as the Board of Supervisors' response to the Grand Jury;

b) Direct Clerk to transmit copies to the Presiding Judge of Superior Court and the 1994-95 and 1995-96 Grand Jury Foremen;

c) Direct County Administrator and Auditor-Controller to continue to work together to improve the County budget process and budget document.

Wallace/Graffy a) through c) Approved.

AGENDA BOARD LETTER (August 15, 1995)

TO: Board o f Supervisors

FROM: Kent M. Taylor County Administrator

STAFF CONTACT: James Laponis, Deputy County Administrator

SUBJECT: Response to the 1994-95 Grand Jury's Interim Final Report on Santa Barbara County Budget Planning and Control

RECOMMENDATIONS:

The Board of Supervisors:

A. Accept the attached responses of the Auditor-Controller and County Administrator to the Findings and Recommendations of the 1994-95 Grand Jury report on Santa Barbara County Budget Planning and
Control as the Board of Supervisors' response;

B. Direct the Clerk of the Board to send the Board's response to the Presiding Judge of the Superior Court and copies to both the 1994-95 and 1995-96 Grand Jury Foremen;

C. Direct County Administrator and Auditor-Controller to continue to work together to improve the County budget process and the budget document.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY & DISCUSSION:

The Auditor-Controller and I have previously submitted our separate departmental responses (copies attached) to the Findings and Recommendations of the 1994-95 Grand Jury's Interim Final Report on Santa Barbara County Budget Planning and Control. Our office is recommending that you accept those responses as your Board's response to the Grand Jury. The responses agree with each of the Grand Jury's recommendations and the Auditor-Controller's and my responses are sufficiently in agreement to allow your Board to adopt both as the Board's response.

Although the County Administrator's departmental submittal to the Grand Jury included a cover letter and comments on the Grand Jury Report's narrative, I am recommending that your Board include in your response only the responses to the Grand Jury Report's findings and recommendations. Some of my comments on the Grand Jury's narrative involved statements the Grand Jury attributed to me and therefore would not be appropriate to include in your response. The Auditor-Controller responded specifically only to the Grand Jury's Recommendations 1, 4 and 5 as required by law.

The Auditor-Controller and I have agreed to work together to continue to improve the budget process, as well as to enhance the clarity and readability of future Proposed Budgets and to better align the information and formats of the Proposed and Final Budgets. The Auditor-Controller suggests that the County move towards a budget prepared in accordance with those generally accepted accounting principles currently used in the preparation of the County's Comprehensive Annual Financial Statements. He believes that a multi-year budget plan utilizing these standards would provide for the roll-up of all funds along the lines of what was suggested in the Grand Jury report. The Auditor-Controller believes this would facilitate presenting the budget in various formats, as desired, to facilitate program budgeting, line item budgeting, net county cost calculations, and performance budgeting.

The County Administrator is interested in learning more about the approach suggested by the Auditor-Controller and will work collaboratively with the Auditor-Controller in evaluating that approach. Our two offices will work with the departments in evaluating alternative reporting methodology in the calculation of Net County Cost to reflect more accurately the true costs of departmental operations.

The Auditor-Controller feels that working towards receiving an Excellence in Budget Preparation award from the Government Finance Officers Association within the next two years would be a worthy goal. The County Administrator's office is not specifically familiar with this award, but the GFOA is a well respected professional association and we intend to learn more about the award process, applicable standards, and examples of budgets which have received the award. Assuming that our review of these issues is positive, which we anticipate, we would join with the Auditor-Controller in striving towards this goal.

The County Administrator and the Auditor-Controller are both committed to prepare an annual budget document that will provide accurate information for the Board to use in its decision making while providing data in a format that facilitates the public's understanding of the document.

MANDATES & SERVICE LEVELS:

No changes in mandates on service levels are occasioned by the recommendations.

The Board of Supervisors is required by statute to respond to the Grand Jury Reports within 90 days of issuance; in this instance, your Board's response is due on August 22, 1995.

FISCAL & FACILITIES IMPACTS:

None.

SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS:

Subject: Response to the 1994-95 Grand Jury's Interim Final Report on Santa Barbara County Budget Planning and Control. Send copies of the Board's response to the Grand Jury report's Findings and Recommendations to the Presiding Judge of the Superior Court and to both the 1994-95 and 1995-96 Grand Jury Foremen.

Attachments

cc: Bob Geis, Auditor-Controller

Robert Glick, Foreman, 1994-95 Grand Jury

Spencer Boise, Foreman, 1995-96 Grand Jury