The Delhi government has decided to come up with an “outcome budget” for the next financial year, a move aimed at bringing in accountability in the expenditure of “public money”. The budget will outline the results expected against a particular expenditure, besides fixing deadlines for projects.
“A comprehensive outcome budgeting exercise has been carried out by each government department and agency, wherein all major programmes and schemes have been mapped against outputs i.e. tangible infrastructure or services to be provided…and outcomes i.e. how will the people of Delhi benefit from that spending,” a senior government official said.
Subsequently, indicators have been defined for each output and outcome, and targets for 201718 have been set, he said. The final outcome budget for 201718 will be presented in the Budget session of the Delhi Legislative Assembly next week along with the financial budget.
Senior officials involved in the budget preparation said the ‘outcome budget’ besides ensuring transparency and accountability on expenditure, will also help in “assessing the performance of officials, which will be included in their annual confidential report (ACR).”
The official said for example, the Education department allocates funds for science fairs, exhibitions, competitions etc, but “does that actually increase students’ interest or performance in science subjects?”
“So a possible outcome to measure would be a survey of students’ interest in science. Or see whether the number of students taking up science stream in class 11 has increased or not,” he said. While the deadlines of expenditures and projects will be monitored quarterly, review of the outcome will be either done quarterly or annuallydepending on the specifics of the case, officials said.
They said besides detailing the outcomes of the upcoming projects, the budget will also outline the outcome for the existing projects.
“Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Wednesday held a review meeting with all department heads and directed them to give a detailed review report of the status of the existing projects and the expenditure incurred by Thursday,” another official said.