IMG-20210111-WA0148 (1)The County Government of Siaya through the Department of Finance and Economic Planning is in the process of making the Budget for the last financial year under Governor Rasanga’s tenure. The 2021/2022 Financial Year’s Budget process is driven by the policy of operationalization of all complete projects and completion of the ongoing ones.

His Excellency The Governor had stated in a recent State of The County Address that he will not leave any white elephant projects behind and that he is keen on ensuring that all projects done during his regime are completed and operationalized.

This informed change of strategy in 2021/2022 Financial Year budget making cycle. To ensure completion of incomplete projects, operationalization and maintainance of existing projects, the Executive followed an advisory by the County Budget Economic Forum (CBEF) for change of strategy. The forum and the public now participate in Departments’ prioritization of projects through sector working groups and provides reports at the initial budget making stage according to Mr. Cleophas Ombogo, The County Executive for Finance.

Other essential guidelines given to departments when preparing sector working group reports which is the second stage of budget making process included fast tracking legislative issues, ensuring availability of land for capital projects and shifting focus to limited macro, high quality projects with major impact to local communities.

Additionally, emphasies is now being put on maintenance of Early Childhood Development Education classrooms and maintenance of roads. This means equipping classrooms and almost 30 health facilities which were already built but have not been equiped and staffed until now.

The Directorate of Planning tasked with efforts to realize this objective has tirelessly engaged with the assembly through the budget committee to gain support in the identified impactful projects.

The process has highly engaged the public since the preparation of the Annual Development Plan whereby public participation was done through submission of memoranda via zoom meetings and radio forums due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Thereafter, the Finance Department organized a Sector Working Group report writing forum where a representative of the public was part of the team and hence interrogated different county departments priorities and gave input on various proposals.

The process saw the revised schedules forwarded back for public participation in all the 30 wards and has since been approved by the County Executive Committee under the leadership of The Governor before being taken to the Siaya County Assembly.

While last year’s budget absorption rate stood at 78.93%, the target for this Financial Year 2020/2021 stands at 87% and 2021/2022 is expected projected to perform even better given the level of preparations so far.

In terms of revenue collection the County has so far collected KShs. 210 million slightly below the target of KShs. 300 million due to the economic woes associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw waiver of revenue collection in the markets to cussion traders in the interim. The doctors go slow in health facilities also interfered with the health sector’s revenue collection. The County’s Own Source Revenue will highly contribute to funding of next year’s budget based on projections by The Finance Team.