For the first time in its 67-year history, the Muscogee County School District has been honored for meeting nationally recognized guidelines for effective budget presentation.
The Government Finance Officers Association named MCSD a Distinguished Budget Presentation Award recipient this month, one of 1,594 recipients this year, according to Tami Garrett of GFOA's technical services department, based in Chicago.
Award recipients are noted for how well their budget serves as a policy document, financial plan, operations guide and communications device. For MCSD, reviewers marked the Superintendent’s Initial Assessment and Recommendations Report as a noteworthy example of the leadership's long- and short-term planning, according to the district's news release.
“The award represents a significant achievement by the entity,” GFOA said in its news release. “Budget documents must be rated ‘proficient’ in all four categories and in the fourteen mandatory criteria within those categories to receive the award.”
GFOA established the Distinguished Budget Presentation Awards Program in 1984 to encourage and assist state and local governments to prepare budget documents of the highest quality, reflecting the guidelines established by the National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting and the GFOA’s best practices on budgeting, and then to recognize individual governments that succeed in achieving that goal, the news release says.
Selected members of the GFOA professional staff and outside reviewers with experience in public-sector budgeting review the documents submitted to the Budget Awards Program, according to the news release.
MCSD superintendent David Lewis said in the news release, “We highly commend the Division of Financial Services for their hard work and conscientiousness leading to this first-ever national recognition for our school district. The fact that this prestigious award is based upon the highest principles of governmental budgeting is a testament to our district’s commitment to ensuring a comprehensive and effective budgeting process.”
The district also recently received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting and the Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting from GFOA and the Association of School Business Officials International, respectively, for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2016. This marks the 31st and 24th consecutive year that MCSD has received these two awards, respectively, the news release says.