2015 Top 25
City of Baltimore, MD
Innovations in American Government Awards

Since 2010, Baltimore has placed results and innovation at the center of the budget process by implementing Outcome Budgeting. Outcome Budgeting rejects the traditional practices of allocating funding to agencies based on the previous year's spending and using across-the-board cuts to close budget gaps. Outcome Budgeting starts with a set of priority outcomes and measurable goals, and requires agencies to make service-level proposals that justify investment in strategies geared towards achieving these outcomes and goals. This framework has enabled Baltimore to reward services that matter most to citizens and demonstrate results, and reduce or eliminate funding for lower value services. It has broken down silos between agencies and shifted to an approach that promotes innovation and collaborative thinking about how to achieve results with a shrinking supply of public dollars.