The Governor's Budget is divided into major sections that provide information on a broad range of budget related topics, including anticipated state revenues, gubernatorial policies, and new initiatives. The major sections are described below:
Governor’s Budget Message
The Governor’s Budget Message describes in general terms the policies and new initiatives, as well as the reductions and efficiencies, in the Governor’s Budget. The Governor’s Message proposal generally includes a description of the State's economic situation and the expected impact of projected economic trends on the state’s fiscal condition. The Governor’s Message may also include broad programmatic goals for each of the individual State departments or major segments of the government, as well as policy directions for the upcoming fiscal year.
Summaries of Appropriations
The Summaries of Appropriations Section of the Budget includes a selection of tables and charts designed to summarize the Governor’s recommendations and highlight the major changes included within the Budget. For instance, the Budget Summary provides a summary of total revenues and recommendations for each of the State’s major fund categories, such as the General Fund, Casino Revenue Fund, and Property Tax Relief Fund. This section also includes a number of tables that explain the Governor’s recommendations at various, significant levels of aggregation:
Summary of Resource and Appropriation Recommendations
Major Increases and Decreases of State Appropriations
Summary of Appropriation Recommendations by Fund
Summary of Appropriation Recommendations by Organization
Summary of Appropriations by Category or Purpose
Summary of Appropriations - Dedicated Funds
Summaries of Revenues, Expenditures and Fund Balances
The Summaries of Revenues, Expenditures and Fund Balances Section provides an overview of the economy, revenue outlook, and the impact that anticipated economic trends will have on the State’s revenue estimates. The tables included within this section highlight the State’s major revenue sources (such as the income tax, sales tax, and corporation tax), and provide year-to-year comparisons and projections. Most of the schedules and exhibits in this section are displayed by fund. For the purposes of State financial accounting, funds are accounting entities that segregate financial resources according to the purposes for which they may be used.
This section also includes four “major schedules” that provide details of actual and estimated revenues and expenditures by department. Within each department, individual revenue sources are shown, including those which are dedicated to support specific functions or programs and are derived from fees, fines, or charges for services, established by law or agency regulation.
Department and Branch Recommendations
The Department and Branch Recommendations Section is the largest section of the Budget and includes the greatest detail on proposed appropriations. It is divided into categories based on the source and use of appropriations which is then organized by governmental branch, and sorted in alphabetical order by agencies or executive departments. The major subdivisions of this section are summarized below:
The Budget displays all of a department’s non-debt appropriations in a single subdivision of the document. The separate subdivisions for Direct State Services (i.e. funds to support operations), Grants-In-Aid, State Aid, and Capital Construction are illustrated together in a consolidated display. Appropriations for Dedicated Funds (e.g. Property Tax Relief Fund, Casino Revenue Fund, etc.) are also included in the consolidated departmental presentation. An aggregate view of appropriation recommendations impacting State Aid, the Casino Revenue Fund, etc., are presented as summaries in the Summaries of Appropriations section.
This consolidated presentation provides readers with a comprehensive view of all of a department’s operations, across all spending categories and funds and provides New Jersey citizens with a better understanding of the relationships among all of the recommendations affecting departmental programs.
Each of the subsections of the Budget Recommendation section follows a consistent hierarchical order: Department, Program Category, Statewide Program, Organization, and/or Program Classification. Individual departmental presentations are grouped by “Statewide Program”, which represents a high-level, functional grouping of related programs contributing to a broad statewide objective. Statewide Programs generally span several departments. Examples of Statewide Programs include Public Safety and Criminal Justice, Natural Resource Management, and Parole and Community Programs.
Below Statewide Programs, the Budget presentation is further broken down into “Program Classifications,” which represents a lower level, operating program function consisting of closely related activities with identifiable objectives or goals. Examples of program classifications in the Department of Environmental Protection include Water Supply Management; Forestry Management; and Shellfish and Marine Fisheries Management. Detailed descriptions of agency program classifications are provided at the beginning of each statewide program presentation within a department, along with objectives for the entire statewide program.
As an example, in the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, all programs are grouped under the broad “Program Category” of Economic Planning, Development, and Security. They are further divided into the following three Statewide Programs:(51) Economic Planning and Development, (53) Economic Assistance and Security, and (54) Manpower and Employment Services. Each of these Statewide Programs is made up of a number of individual program classifications. Program Categories and Statewide Programs generally span multiple departments.
View the programmatic hierarchy of two State departments, Banking and Insurance and Labor and Workforce Development. Note that the Statewide Program called Economic Planning, Development, and Security is common to departments.
Department and Branch Recommendations is the subdivision of the Budget that relates to the appropriations and expenditures that support operations of State agencies, grants to individuals, and aid to local government jurisdictions. In addition to appropriation and expenditure data, agency objectives, and descriptions of agency programs are detailed. Federal and non-State funds are also included.
Each statewide program presentation provides data on the number of employees and funded positions within each department. The actual number of employees reported may be less than the number of positions allocated to an agency and is dependent upon authorized hiring levels and other factors. Position and personnel data are summarized by funding source and by program classification, and include information on the current year, two prior years, and a projection for the year to come.
The appropriations data includes detailed funding recommendations from the General Fund and Dedicated Funds by program classification, fund category (Direct State Services, Grants-In-Aid, State Aid, and Capital Construction), and object of expenditure.
The General Fund represents the collection of all State revenues not otherwise restricted by statute. There are four major funds dedicated by the Constitution for specific purposes:
The Appendices includes Statements of Estimated Revenues; Expenditures and Fund Balances of the State’s Special Revenue, Capital Projects, and Trust Funds (excluding Pension Trust Funds). The statements include the actual revenues and expenditures for the fiscal year presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, as well as estimated amounts for the upcoming fiscal years.