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Writing Financial Recommendations for Cabinet and Joint Minister Papers: Technical Guide for Departments (Dec 2012 Update)
Writing Financial Recommendations for Cabinet and Joint Minister Papers: Technical Guide for Departments (Sep 2014 Update)

Publication Details

  • Writing Financial Recommendations for Cabinet and Joint Minister Papers: Technical Guide for Departments
  • Published: 15 Sep 2014
  • Status: Current
  • Authors: The Treasury
  • Hard copy: Available in PDF and Word formats only. HTML available on request from info@treasury.govt.nz.
  • Persistent URL for bibliographic use:
    http://purl.oclc.org/nzt/g-wfrtg
 

Writing Financial Recommendations for Cabinet and Joint Minister Papers: Technical Guide for Departments

December 2012
Update published 15 Sep 2014

This Technical Guide is intended to help users prepare papers containing financial recommendations. The formats used are designed to meet Cabinet Office requirements for recommendations being considered by Cabinet (refer to the Step-by-Step Guide at http://www.dpmc.govt.nz/cabinet/guide/index.html) and by Ministers, to ensure that information presented to them follows a consistent style and format.

Agencies may prefer to download and use the Word version of the Technical Guide, as this will enable them to copy and paste sections of the Technical Guide where relevant.

The Technical Guide was revised in September 2014 to reflect changes following the 2013 amendments to the Public Finance Act 1989. For more detail and other changes see What's New? on page 3.

Guidance for Standard Cabinet Papers

The correct drafting of financial recommendations is essential to record accurately Cabinet's financial decisions. Such decisions provide Cabinet's authority for changes in appropriations and departmental net assets, and the use of Imprest Supply.

There are two recommendations that are commonly used in papers submitted to Cabinet for new funding.

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What's New?

Introduction

  • About this Guide
  • Why have Financial Recommendations?
  • How to Use this Guide
  • Financial Recommendations Module in CFISnet

Essential Elements for Financial Recommendations

How to Write Financial Recommendations

  • Eight Steps in Writing Financial Recommendations
  • Impact on the Operating Balance and/or Debt
  • Supplementary Estimates and Imprest Supply
  • Impact on Contingencies
  • Numbering of Recommendations
  • Four Common Scenarios
  • Forecasting Changes
  • Recognition of Crown Liabilities (eg, Legal Liabilities)
  • Baseline Reductions
  • Technical Accounting Adjustments

Annex A: Anatomy of Financial Recommendations

  • Anatomy of a Text Recommendation and Appropriation Table
  • Anatomy of a Summary Table (for Use with Multiple Initiatives)
  • Anatomy of an Impact Table (for Use where Changes Partially Impact)

Annex B: Examples of Typical Financial Recommendations

  • Example 1 – Combined Approval and Impact Statement for a Single Baseline Change
  • Example 2 – Combined Approval and Impact Statement for Multiple Baseline Changes All Impacting on Operating Balance and/or Debt
  • Example 3 – Separate Impact Table where a Single Baseline Change Partially Impacts on the Operating Balance and/or Debt
  • Example 4 – Separate Impact and Summary Tables where Multiple Baseline Changes Partially Impact on the Operating Balance and/or Debt
  • Example 5 – Expense and/or Capital Transfers within an appropriation across financial years (ECTs)
  • Example 6 – In-Principle Expense and/or Capital Transfers within an appropriation across financial years (IPECTs)
  • Example 7 – Retention of Underspends (RoUs), where approval is sought prior to or at March Baseline Update
  • Example 8 – Retention of Underspends (RoUs), where approval is sought after March Baseline Update
  • Example 9 – Front-loading of Spending (FLoS)
  • Example 10 – Fiscally Neutral Adjustments (FNAs) Within a Vote
  • Example 11 – Fiscally Neutral Adjustments (FNAs) Between Votes
  • Example 12 – Changes in Funding Source
  • Example 13 – Changes to Crown Revenue or Capital Receipts
  • Example 14 – Specifying Baselines beyond the Forecast Period

Annex C: Financial Recommendations for Multi-year Appropriations (MYAs)

  • Example 15 – Establishing a New MYA
  • Example 16 – Converting an Existing Annual Appropriation into an MYA

Annex D: Financial Recommendations for Multi-Category Appropriations (MCAs)

  • Example 17 – Establishing a New MCA
  • Example 18 – Fiscally Neutral Adjustments to or from an MCA
  • Example 19 – Adding a Category to an MCA

Annex E: Financial Recommendations for Permanent Legislative Authorities (PLAs)

  • Example 20 – Changes in Appropriation where Permanent Legislative Authority Exists

Annex F: Financial Recommendations for Capital

  • Example 21 – Capital Injections to Departments
  • Example 22 – Capital Injections to Departments with Associated Operating Implications
  • Example 23 – Non-departmental Capital Expenditure

Annex G: Capital and Operating Swaps and Voluntary Capital Withdrawals

  • Example 24 – Operating to Capital Swaps within a Single Financial Year
  • Example 25 – Capital to Operating Swaps within a Single Financial Year
  • Example 26 – Operating to Capital Swaps where Reductions in Operating Expenses are Ongoing
  • Example 27 – Capital to Operating Swaps where Increases in Operating Expenses are Ongoing
  • Example 28 – Voluntary Capital Withdrawals

Annex H: Financial Recommendations for Retention of Departmental Operating Surplus

  • Example 29 – Requests for Retention of Surplus

Annex I: Departmental Other Expenses

finrecs-sep14.pdf (360 KB) pp. 77
finrecs-sep14.doc (2940 KB) pp. 77
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