Accrual Budgeting

(). Accrual Budgeting: Lessons learned from the Harmonised Accounting Model (HAM) in the light of IPSAS. In: Proceedings from the EGPA Annual Conference 2004.

The standard setting process for the IPSAS has so far mainly been based on the relevant IAS, adapting them for the use in the public sector. However, the process has now reached a stage at which topics of a specific relevance for the public sector are being addressed. One of the specific topics on the agenda is budgeting, which has a different role and certainly more importance than in the private sector. One of the issues to be resolved is accrual budgeting. While an accrual accounting has become a generally accepted model in many countries, only a few have gone all the way through to budgeting. In Switzerland the cantons and local governments have been using a modified accrual model that includes budgeting for almost 20 years. This so-called Harmonised Accounting Model (HAM) has recently been evaluated in the light of IPSAS by a research project of ?Adminet? the National Network of Excellence in Public Management. This article is based on this project. It underlines the generally positive experiences and suggests that the main question to be resolved for accrual budgeting is the budgetary treatment of revaluations. The author shows two options, one following closely the constitutional framework and another following closely the principles of the existing IPSAS.