The operating budget represents the day-to-day costs to operate the Town and provide programs and services. The Council uses the budget to set priorities in a given year by setting aside money for programs and services.
The operating budget is driven by strategic goals and departmental initiatives. The budget process includes a public meeting where department managers present their individual budgets to Council who then have an opportunity to ask questions regarding the budget.
Ultimately Council must adopt an operating budget for each calendar year. In the event that an operating budget is not passed by December 31 of a year, an interim operating budget may be adopted for part of a calendar year.
The capital budget focuses on buying or building fixed assets and includes the amounts to acquire, construct, remove or improve capital property, the anticipated sources and amounts of money related to the capital item and the amount to be transferred from the operating budget. Council must also adopt a capital budget for each calendar year.
The Town of Didsbury also prepares a multi-year written capital plan which reflects its anticipated capital property additions over time. The multi-year plan is used in the annual capital budgeting process, however, it is not in itself a budget. Therefore the multi-year plan may differ from any given annual adopted capital budget.
On an annual basis the Auditor, appointed by Council, audits and reports on the Town’s Financial Statements and Financial Information Return (FIR) as prepared under the Government of Alberta standard format. The audited Financial Statements disclose the financial results for the year as well as notes to the financial statements to further explain those results. The audited Financial Statements are prepared in accordance with Canadian Public Sector Accounting Standards.