Memos to the Governor (2nd ed.)

An Introduction to State Budgeting, Second Edition, Updated

by Dall W. Forsythe,

Memos to the Governor: An Introduction to State Budgeting, Second Edition, Updated

With a new foreword by New York's former governor, Mario Cuomo, this revised and updated edition of Memos to the Governor is a concise guidebook that takes the reader behind governmental fiscal gobbledygook to explain in clear, understandable prose the technical, economic, and political dynamics of budget making. At all levels of government, the budget has become the battleground for policymaking and politics. This book helps current and future public administrators untangle the knotty processes of budget preparation and implementation.

Dall W. Forsythe, who served as budget director under Governor Cuomo, outlines the budgeting process through a series of memos from a budget director to a newly elected governor—a format that helps readers with little or no background to understand complicated financial issues. He covers all of the steps of budget preparation, from strategy to execution, explaining technical vocabulary, and discussing key topics including baseline budgeting, revenue forecasting, and gap-closing options.

Forsythe brings fresh insights into such issues as the importance of a multiyear strategic budget plan, the impact of the business cycle on state budgets, the tactical problems of getting budgets adopted by legislatures, and, of course, the relationship between governor and budget officer. Memos to the Governor is a painless, practical introduction to budget preparation for students of and practitioners in public administration and public-sector financial management.

  • Georgetown University Press; August 2004
  • ISBN: 9781589013704
  • Edition: 2
  • Read online
  • Title: Memos to the Governor
  • Author: Dall W. Forsythe; Mario Cuomo (other)
  • Imprint: Georgetown University Press

About The Author

Dall W. Forsythe served as budget director of New York State under Governor Mario Cuomo from 1988-1991. He was also chief budget officer for the New York City public schools. He has taught public management and political science at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, at Columbia University, and at the University at Albany. He has worked as a research scholar at the Rockefeller Institute of Government and as an investment banker at Lehman Brothers. He is the editor of Quicker, Better, Cheaper? Managing Performance in American Government. Forsythe is currently an executive in the nonprofit sector, working for the Episcopal Church.