Oregon’s budget is a tool to carry out the state’s law and policy decisions. It appropriates the state’s General Fund, allocates the state's Lottery Fund, and expends the state's Other Funds and Federal Funds. The budget covers two fiscal years (a biennium), meaning it runs from July 1 of an odd-numbered year to June 30 of the next odd-numbered year. For example, July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2023 would be considered a biennium.
Budget Process - Three Major Phases:
Agency Request Budget
Agencies start the budget early in even-numbered years to develop their Agency Request Budget. This lays out agency finances and policies for consideration by the Governor. The Chief Financial Office (CFO) gives agencies guidelines to use in this process. Agencies send their budget request to the CFO by September 1.
The Governor and the CFO review the budget requests. They use the Governor’s priorities, budget policies, and current law to make budget decisions. The Governor’s Recommended Budget document summarizes those decisions. It gives data on all the state’s revenues and expenditures. It also gives information on each agency’s budget. The Department of Revenue puts together a Tax Expenditure Report that is published at the same time. The Tax Expenditure Report outlines the various reductions available to residents for the income tax. The Governor presents the Recommended Budget to the Legislature when it meets at the start of the next calendar year (for example, January of 2021, during the 2021-23 biennium).
Legislatively Adopted Budget
Once the Governor's Recommended Budget is received, legislative committees review the proposed budget. They hold public hearings to request feedback from each agency and the public. Each budget bill has a Budget Report that presents the committee's recommendations. The Legislature votes on each budget bill. The budget bills that are enacted into law make up the Legislatively Adopted Budget. Agencies carry out, or execute, the budget over the two year budget period.
The Emergency Board can make some changes to the budget between legislative sessions. Special sessions may also be called to deal with budget issues. The Legislatively Adopted Budget, and the changes to it after the Emergency Board reviews it, make up the Legislatively Approved Budget.