Policy-Making in the Context of Public Budgeting
Public budgeting is both an academic and civil service aspect that has attracted several debates in the recent past. Even though budgeting is a policy arena that focuses on government choices for fulfilling citizens’ fundamental needs, divergent perspectives exist regarding the link between policymaking and public budgeting. While politicians perceive the federal budget as a political tool used for gaining political mileage, economists view budgeting as the strategic allotment of resources to benefit the society. Conversely, most corporate managers regard the budget as a means of implementing public policy (Anderson, 2014). Notwithstanding the conflicting viewpoints concerning the two elements, policymaking plays a crucial role in public budgeting.
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Policymakers play a significant role in the drafting and implementation processes of public budgets. Notably, there are numerous institutions in the government that shape budget policies to ensure they meet the required standards. For instance, civil societies and individuals often take part in deciding how the federal budget tackles issues relevant to the entire population. In this case, the affected public makes its problems known to the government via a framework known as the social fragmentation of analysis (Bendor, 2015). According to this system, no single person has adequate information that can assist in creating a sensible policy decision. Therefore, many policymakers must be involved in ensuring the budget resonates with the majority.
Additionally, policy-making assists in collecting relevant information pertinent to public budgeting. Bendor (2015) contends that people gather policies from comprehensive interactions and shared adaptation among several individuals with diverse beliefs, interests, and knowledge. As such, public budgeting policies are sourced from many people who build on precedent policies, with the intent of making a better budget that is relevant in the modern era. With a plurality of actors, governments can adopt policies that help in the amelioration of existing issues rather than abstract ideals like social justice.
In addition to the mentioned aspects, policy-making helps in maintaining accountability concerning the use of taxes. Taxpayer’s resources fund almost all government functions and policies are formed to ensure the money is used appropriately. However, many people who pay for the policies may not benefit from them while the beneficiaries may be contributing too little resources (Head & Alford, 2015). Such instances result in unnecessary government spending of public resources on aspects that may be detrimental to the entire society. Public policies, therefore, can be used in these situations to guarantee that federal budgets are achieving the objectives for which they are made. What’s more, policymaking can assist in economic controls to ensure efficiency in drafting public budgets.
Public budgeting has been a fundamental government aspect in most nations over the years. Notably, budgeting is a public policy that concentrates on fulfilling the population’s needs. Some elements as mentioned above assert that policymaking plays a significant role in public budgeting. Budgeting policies ensure that federal institutions remain responsible and open about the use of taxpayers’ resources (Van Dooren, Bouckaert, & Halligan, 2015). Despite the challenges facing public budgeting policies, proper budgeting can augment the public perception of government processes. Mentioned above do some of the differences that exist in the circumstances in which budget plans are carried out. Overall, policymaking is a vital step towards creating effective budgetary policies which in turn translates to efficient public budgets.
Anderson, J. E. (2014). Public policymaking. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.
Bendor, J. (2015). Incrementalism: Dead yet flourishing. Public Administration Review, 75(2), 194-205.
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Head, B. W., & Alford, J. (2015). Wicked problems: Implications for public policy and management. Administration & Society, 47(6), 711-739.
Van Dooren, W., Bouckaert, G., & Halligan, J. (2015). Performance management in the public sector. London: Routledge.