Budget and Finances

Operating Budget Preparation
The operating budget shows the day-to-day costs of delivering programs and services for the next year. These costs are similar to your everyday household expenses such as mortgage payments, utilities or groceries.

Beginning in September of each year, the Director of Corporate Services will work with department supervisors to come up with tentative operating budgets for each department. Once this process has been complete, the Director of Corporate Services and the Chief Administrative Officer will develop a preliminary operating budget for presentation to Council during its Regular Council Meeting in December for Council to review, make recommendations, and adopt.

In addition to the current year, the operating budget adopted each year will include the projected operating budgets for the following two years, ensuring that Cardston County is adopting a three-year operating budget each year in compliance with the new Municipal Government Act requirements. The projected operating budgets included in the three-year operating budget will be adopted in-principle, meaning that they are not final and will be reviewed through the same process outlined above.

Capital Budget Preparation

The capital budget is how we pay for major projects such as building and reconstructing roads and purchasing new equipment. These costs are similar to adding an addition to your home this year.
During the operating budget development process each year, the Director of Operations will present the five-year capital budget to Council for its review, recommendations, and adoption. The current year of the capital budget will be adopted by Council along with the following 4 years of the capital budget to be approved in-principle. The capital budget will be reviewed each year through the process outlined here.

Audited Financial Statements

Financial statements provide information on a municipality's financial position in terms of its assets and liabilities, its net debt, its accumulated surplus or deficit, and its tangible capital assets and other non-financial assets. Financial statements also provide a meaningful summary of the sources, allocation, and consumption of municipal economic resources, how the activities of the period have affected the municipality’s net debt, how municipal activities were financed, and how cash requirements were met.

The consolidated financial statements of Cardston County are prepared by the County's appointed auditing firm in accordance with Canadian public sector accounting standards. The County's current auditing firm is KPMG International.

The consolidated financial statements reflect the assets, liabilities, revenues, expenses, and changes in net financial assets (net debt) of Cardston County.

Reading the Audited Financials
Statement of Financial Position
The Statement of Financial Position reports on a municipality’s assets, liabilities and accumulated surplus. A review of the Statement of Financial Position should be in the context of a long-term view of the municipality’s financial health, and not focus solely on how much money is currently in the bank.

Statement of Operations
The Statement of Operations reports on revenues, expenses and the results for a fiscal year or reporting period. The Statement of Operations provides detailed information on what transactions have impacted the accumulated surplus from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.

Statement of Change in Net Financial Assets (Debt)
The Statement of Change in Net Financial Assets (Debt) explains the difference between the annual surplus or deficit and the change in net financial assets (debt). It tracks what the municipality has spent to acquire tangible capital assets and inventories of supplies. 
Statement of Cash Flow
The Statement of Cash Flow identifies where cash came from, shows how cash was used, and provides details on changes to cash and cash equivalents since the last reporting period.