Article VI

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Financial Procedures

Section 6. 1. Fiscal year.

The fiscal year of the city shall begin on the first day of April and end on the last day of March, unless otherwise provided by city ordinance.

Section 6.2. Submission of budget and budget message.

At least 60 days prior to the end of each fiscal year the Chief Administrative Officer shall submit to the council a city budget and an accompanying budget message.

Section 6.3. Budget.

The budget shall provide a complete financial plan of all city funds and activities for the ensuing fiscal year and, except as required by law or this charter, shall be in such form as the Chief Administrative Officer deems desirable or the council may require by resolution or ordinance. The budget shall indicate in separate sections:

(a) Proposed expenditures for current operations during the ensuing fiscal year and the method of financing such expenditures;

(b) Proposed capital expenditures during the ensuing fiscal year and the proposed method of financing each such capital expenditure; and

(c) Anticipated net surplus or deficit for the ensuing fiscal year of each utility owned or operated by the city and the proposed method of its disposition; subsidiary budgets for each such utility giving detailed income and expenditure information shall be attached as appendices to the budget.

In no event shall the total proposed expenditures for any fund defined by the city ordinance exceed the estimated revenues to be received, plus any unencumbered balance from the previous fiscal year, or less any deficit estimated for the beginning of the fiscal year. Nothing herein shall be construed as requiring the city to use any cash balance as current revenue, or to change from a cash basis of financing its expenditures.

Section 6.4. Capital program.

(a) Submission to council.

The Chief Administrative Officer shall prepare and submit to the council a capital program for a minimum of three years at least four months prior to the final date for submission of the budget.

(b) Program requirements.

The capital program shall include:

(i) A clear general summary of its contents;

(ii) A list of all capital improvements which are proposed to be undertaken with appropriate supporting information as to the necessity for such improvements;

(iii) Cost estimates, method of financing and recommended time schedule for each such improvement; and

(iv) The estimated annual cost of operating and maintaining facilities to be constructed or acquired.

The above information may be revised and extended each year with regard to capital improvements pending or in progress.

Section 6.5. Council action on budget.

(a) Notice and hearing.

The council shall publish in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the city a general summary of the budget and a notice stating (i) the times and places where copies of the message and budget are available for inspection by the public and (ii) the time and place, not less than two weeks after such publication, for a public hearing on the budget.

(b) Amendment before adoption.

After the public hearing, the council may adopt the budget with or without amendment. In amending the budget, it may add or increase programs or amounts and may delete or decrease any programs or amounts, except expenditures required by law or for debt service or for estimated cash deficit, provided that no amendment to the budget shall increase the authorized expenditure to an amount greater than the total of estimated revenues and unencumbered balance from any previous fiscal year.

(c) Adoption.

The council shall adopt the budget for the next fiscal year on or before the last day of the fiscal year currently ending. If the council fails to adopt the budget by this date, the amounts appropriated for current operation for the current fiscal year shall be deemed adopted for the ensuing fiscal year on a month to month basis, with all items in it prorated accordingly, until such time as the council adopts a budget for the ensuing fiscal year. Adoption of the budget shall constitute appropriations of the amounts specified therein for expenditure from the funds indicated.

Section 6.6. Council action on capital program.

(a) Notice and hearing.

The council shall publish in one or more newspapers of general circulation in the city a general summary of the capital program and a notice stating (i) the times and places where copies of the capital program are available for inspection by the public, and (ii) the time and place, not less than two weeks after such publication, for a public hearing on the capital program.

(b) Adoption.

The council by resolution shall adopt the capital program with or without amendment after the public hearing and on or before the last day of the current fiscal year.

Section 6.7. Public records.

Copies of the budget and the capital program as adopted shall be public records and shall be made available to the public at suitable places in the city.

Section 6.8. Amendments after adoption.

(a) Supplemental appropriations.

If during the fiscal year the Chief Administrative Officer certifies that there are available for appropriation current revenues in excess of those estimated in the budget, or an unencumbered balance from the previous fiscal year in excess of the amount estimated in the budget, or the requirement for additional expenditures not anticipated in the budget, the council by ordinance may make supplemental appropriations for the year up to the amount permitted by law and this charter.

(b) Reduction of appropriations.

If at any time during the fiscal year it appears probable to the Chief Administrative Officer that the revenues available will be insufficient to meet the amount appropriated, it shall be reported to the council without delay. The Chief Administrative Officer shall indicate the estimated amount of the deficit, any remedial action taken and recommendations as to any other steps to be taken. The council shall then take such further action as it deems necessary to prevent or minimize any deficit and for that purpose it may by ordinance reduce appropriations.

(c) Transfer of appropriations.

(i) Inter-departmental transfer.
The Chief Administrative Officer may authorize the transfer of unencumbered surpluses from one account to another, within the accounts of any city department, provided that no such transfers shall exceed such sum as may be established by ordinance from or to any account within the fiscal year unless such transfer is authorized by ordinance.
(ii) Other transfer.
The council may by ordinance reduce or increase the appropriations to any account during the fiscal year by transferring such appropriations from one account to another, provided that at no time shall the total appropriations exceed the limit imposed by the charter or state law.

(d) Emergency appropriations/effective date.

The supplemental appropriations and reduction or transfer of appropriations authorized by this section may be made effective immediately upon adoption if made by emergency ordinance in accordance with the provisions of Section 3.9(f).

Section 6.9. Administration of funds and obligations.

(a) Payments.

No payment shall be made from city funds until the city employee, so designated by ordinance, certifies there has been an appropriation therefor and that sufficient funds remain of such appropriation to cover such payment.

(b)Obligations.

(i) Current. No obligation to pay funds may be incurred by the city except as required by this charter or in accordance with procedures established by the city council. No other obligation of the city may be undertaken unless approved by the city council. No ordinance undertaking any obligation to pay funds may be finally approved until the city employee, so designated by ordinance, certifies that sufficient funds have been appropriated or are appropriated by such ordinance to satisfy such obligation.
(ii) Future.
Obligations to pay funds beyond the end of the fiscal year in which the obligation is incurred may be undertaken if:

(1) Such obligations are to be satisfied from revenues obtained by the issuance of bonds, or

(2) Such obligations constitute a lease or similar agreement which by its terms provides for the termination of any obligation extending beyond the current fiscal year if funds are not appropriated in the following year and sufficient funds have been appropriated to satisfy the city's obligation upon such termination.

(3) Such obligations are authorized by state law then in effect.

Section 6.10. Tax rates and tax rolls.

The council shall by ordinance set the tax rate and levy on the various classes of property as soon as practicable after passage of the ordinance approving the budget, but no later than August 15th of each year or as otherwise provided by law. No ordinance setting such tax rates and levy shall be so adopted until there has been a public hearing on the proposed ordinance. Notice of such public hearing shall be published as provided by ordinance.

Section 6.11. Sale of bonds.

The city shall be authorized to sell any bonds as may now or hereafter be authorized by law. Bonds sold by the city may be sold at private or public sale as authorized by law. In the event such bonds are to be sold at public sale the same shall be sold upon sealed proposals after reasonable public notice has been given as provided by ordinance or otherwise by law. Any public sale shall be conducted according to the terms and conditions as may be provided by ordinance.