Stillwater News

What is the budget cycle?

Released:Jan 13, 2020


(STILLWATER, OKLAHOMA / Jan. 13, 2020) – Residents may often hear City staff refer to the budget cycle— but what is it and how does it work? We'll break it down for you.

Budget Cycle

The budget cycle refers to the life of a budget from creation to evaluation. The City of Stillwater's fiscal year begins July 1 and ends June 30.

 Budget Cycle Graphic

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  • Staff and city council collect continuous feedback from the public at public meetings and on social media.

1. January – March (Budget Preparation)

2. April – June (City Council Approval)

3. July – June (Implementation)

  • The new budget year begins July 1.

  • After July 1 the Adopted Budget becomes a working document, which is known as the Operating Budget. This new version of the budget includes all of the modifications made during the fiscal year that ends June 30. Modifications may include carryforward adjustments, budget amendments and budget revisions. 

  • The Finance Department monitors the Operating Budget regularly. As the City’s organizational or operating environment changes, adjustments to the current budget may be required.

4. July – December (Feedback in the form of year-end accounting and financial reporting)

  • The annual year-end accounting and financial reporting, as required by city charter, begins in July. The reporting process provides financial feedback on the  Operating Budget

  • The Finance Department prepares the accounting and financial reports for audit by an independent outside auditor. (July – December)

  • The City’s Annual Audit is completed in December by an outside CPA firm. This ensures financial statements have been presented fairly. Audit information is included in the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR).

    The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) is presented to City Council in December. The CAFR is filed with the Oklahoma State Auditor and Inspector and with other interested parties.

    A .pdf version of the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) can be found in the Document Center.  

  • In January, the budgeting process begins again.

Find more information on budget at the City's financial center:


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