The State of the Cuyahoga County Budget:
Looking Back and Looking Forward

William Tarter, Jr., MPA
Public Policy Associate & Community Advocacy

February, 2018

In this edition of County Budgeting Matters, we will examine the strategies that Cuyahoga County Executive, Armond Budish, used for developing the 2018-2019 biennium budget, compare the 2017 process to the process used two years earlier, review funding decisions made during the budget process and finally, we will look at challenges the county may face moving forward.

Key Cuyahoga County Executive Budget Strategies

The County Executive’s budget proposal relied on a number of strategies, including:

  • Asking agencies to submit budgets assuming a decrease in revenue due, in large part, to the loss of the Managed Care Organization sales tax.
  • Continuing the practice of filling holes left by reductions in General Fund dollars, with money from the two Health and Human Services levies. Historically, the county has moved expenditures back and forth between the General Fund and the Health and Human Services Levy Fund. In 2017, County Executive Budish’s administration also proposed reallocating money from different sources, including $4.5 million in unclaimed funds from county residents and moving $7.5 million from the sales tax fund to the General Fund.
  • Using one-time federal funding (e.g. The “Hardest Hit” fund) to replace county General Fund dollars that had been expected to be spent as part of the county’s demolition fund.
Moving forward the county will have to be more strategic on how to spend existing funds, and will have to also identify new methods of generating revenue. Read more on the 2018-19 budgeting process in this @communitysols report Click To Tweet