Finance Department

350 S. 5th St., Room 325M
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Budget Basics: The annual budget process

The City of Minneapolis annual budget process integrates information from the City's strategic and business planning process, capital long-range improvement committee process, and the departmental performance measurement review process (Results Minneapolis) to establish annual resource allocations.

What happens throughout the year

January to early April

Department-level assessment of prior year and planning for current year

Analysis of what a department accomplished over the past year leads it to assess its business plan and make appropriate changes to the plan for the next year. Featured elements are reported and the reports made public. This analysis and reporting is the Department Results Minneapolis program.


Preliminary prior year-end budget status report

Finance presents a year-end budget status report for the previous year to the Ways and Means/Budget Committee. This is a preliminary report because the audited Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) is not available until the second quarter of the year.

March to April

Capital improvement budget development

The City has a five-year capital improvement plan. The departments prepare and modify capital improvement proposals on an annual basis. Finance and Property Services, Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED), and the Capital Long-Range Improvements Committee (CLIC) review capital improvement proposals of the departments. CLIC is the resident advisory committee to the Mayor and the City Council on capital programming.

April to June

Operating budget development

Departments work in coordination with Finance and Property Services to prepare operating budgets based on programs. In addition to preparing operating budgets for programs, departments prepare proposals that describe policy and organizational changes with financial implications. The program proposals form the basis for the Mayor’s budget meetings with departments held in June and July.

Capital Asset Request System (CARS) plan and budget development

Departments work in coordination with Finance and Property Services to prepare five-year plans for the replacement of smaller capital assets and operating capital. The plans are based upon the need for replacements and the addition of capital assets for operational effectiveness. Each request requires a justification and an estimate of the impact on operating budgets, as well as identification of funding sources.

June to August

Mayor's Recommended Budget

The Mayor’s Recommended Budget is based on program proposals submitted by departments. These program proposals are reviewed and discussed by the submitting department, the Mayor’s Office, and staff from the Coordinator’s Office and Finance and Property Services for priority-setting. In addition to reviewing operating budgets, the Mayor meets with representatives from the Capital Long-Range Improvements Committee (CLIC) before finalizing the capital budget recommendation. By City Charter, the Mayor must make recommendations to the City Council and Board of Estimate and Taxation (BET) on the budget no later than August 15 of each year.


Maximum proposed property tax levy

As a requirement of State law, the maximum proposed property tax levy increase is authorized by September 30, by the Board of Estimate and Taxation (BET). The BET sets the maximum levies for the City, the Municipal Building Commission, the Public Housing Authority and Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board.

September to November

City Council budget review and development

The City Council budget review and development process begins with a series of public hearings on the budget. Departments present their Mayor’s Recommended Budget to the Ways and Means and Budget Sub-committee which is comprised of all Councilmembers. Following departmental budget hearings, the Ways and Means and Budget Subcommittee amends and moves forward final budget recommendations to the full City Council. The Committee-recommended budget includes any and all changes that are recommended by the Committee to the Mayor's Recommended Budget.

Truth in Taxation

Truth in Taxation (TNT) property tax statements are mailed by Hennepin County to property owners indicating the maximum amount of property taxes that the owner will be required to pay based upon the preliminary levies approved in September. These statements also indicate the dates when public hearings will be held to provide opportunities for public input. State law was changed in the 2009 legislative session to eliminate a separate TNT hearing in lieu of a mandate to allow public comments at the meeting at which the final budget adoption occurs. The City Council has maintained a separate hearing however as part of the regularly scheduled budget meetings. According to State law, the meeting at which the budget is adopted must be held after 6:00 p.m., on a date after November 24.


City Council budget adoption

The City Council adopts a final budget that reflects any and all changes made by the full Council to the Mayor's Recommended Budget. Once the final budget resolutions are adopted, requests from departments for additional funds or positions made throughout the year are to be brought as amendments to the original budget resolutions before the Ways and Means/Budget Committee and the City Council for approval. The independent boards and commissions adopt their own operating budgets.

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Last updated Jan 9, 2019



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