The City’s annual financial cycle includes the following elements:
- preparation of a budget proposal for the next year and a financial plan for the next three years
- implementation of the objectives written down in the current year’s budget
- reporting to the City Board about the budget’s implementation
- assessment of the previous year’s financial and operational performance in the financial statements.
In addition to the financial cycle, the City of Helsinki’s divisions and public enterprises implement the Helsinki City Strategy, set by the City Council for its four-year period of office. The City’s investment plans span a period of ten years. The ten-year investment programme can be found in the budget.
What takes place in the City’s financial management in different months?
Preparation of the City’s financial statements begins.
The work on putting the financial statements together continues.
The financial statements are completed in March, and the City Board considers them by the last day of March.
After this consideration, the City Board sends the previous year’s financial statements to auditors for auditing. The consideration of the financial statements continues in June, this time by the City Council.
Every year, the City Councillors have the option to submit budget initiatives by 15 March. These initiatives are then sent to the City of Helsinki’s committees and boards for a round of comments.
The Audit Committee completes its assessment report by the end of April. In this assessment report, the Audit Committee assesses whether the operational and financial objectives set by the City Council for the previous year have been met.
The first of three follow-up reports on the City and its group companies is also completed in April.
In May, the City Board issues a statement on the Audit Committee’s assessment report. The City Board’s statement includes the responses of the City’s committees and boards to the observations made in the assessment report.
In June, the City Council considers the previous year’s financial statements and records the Audit Committee’s assessment report and the statements issued about it as a matter of record.
The City Council also holds a preliminary debate on the next year’s budget in June. The preliminary debate provides the City’s officials with guidelines as to how they should prepare the next year’s budget.
Interim financial statements about the City’s finances are completed at the turn of July and August. They cover the period from January to June.
The City Board reviews the status of the budget preparation process. Also on the City Board’s agenda in August are the budget proposal’s framework and the guidelines for preparing the budget proposal.
Additionally, the second of three follow-up reports on the City and its group companies is completed in August.
The preparation of a budget proposal for the next year continues.
The City committees complete their budget proposals in September, for the most part.
The budget proposal for the next year is published in October or in November.
The last of three follow-up reports on the City and its group companies is also completed in October.
The City Board and City Council considers the budget proposal in November and December. The City Council decides on the municipal tax and real estate tax rates during the first session and approves the budget during the second session.
During budget consideration, councillor groups and members of the City Council may propose resolutions and changes to the budget proposal. The City Council then puts any resolutions proposed up to vote during the budget consideration.
The City Board considers a report on the actions taken on account of the assessment report.
The budget compliance guidelines for the next year are published.
The City divisions prepare their performance budgets and action plans according to the guidelines laid down in the approved budget.
The City of Helsinki’s projected financial statements are also completed in December.