Budget Analysis Harford County Maryland

Evaluating Expenditures

The goal of public organizations is to provide public services. This is done through expenditures ranging from salary for law enforcement personal to maintenance of public parks. Governments provide a wide range of public goods and often there is more demand for services than revenue to pay for those services. Determining annual expenditures is one of the primary functions of any governing body and trade-off typically have to be made.

In this discussion, you will review the expenditure priorities of the city or county government in which you live. Finally, you will make recommendation of how to reduce future year expenditures when faced with a revenue short-fall.

Be sure to first review your readings from this week and prior weeks that will help support this discussion and then research additional resources to assist in your evaluation. For example, it is helpful to examine available data and other public documents for the city or county. These resources are useful and should be incorporated into your discussion. Also be sure to incorporate the Mikesell text to support your analysis.

The Assignment 1.5-2 pages, APA format, Cite all references and include:

  • In looking at the Harford county government budget, identify 3 departments which get the most general fund resources.
  • Next, identify the expenditure categories that are most important in the total spending for each department.
  • Finally, If this county entity was faced with a 2% reduction in general fund resources, what specific expenditure reductions would you recommend and why?

Be sure to support your posting and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.



Mikesell, J. L. (2018). Fiscal administration: Analysis and applications for the public sector (10th ed.). Boston, MA: Wadsworth.

  • Chapter 5, “State and Local Budgets” (pp. 214-251)
  • Chapter 3, “Budget Methods and Practices” (pp. 106-142)


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