With the operating appropriations bills, the process begins in the early part of each even-numbered year. The Office of Budget and Management (OBM) initiates the process by submitting to agencies receiving appropriated funds detailed instructions on the process and formats they are to follow in preparing their budget requests, as well as the date by which the requests must be submitted to OBM.
After receiving an agency's budget request, OBM reviews the request and holds meetings and budget hearings with the agency as needed. OBM then works with the Governor and his or her staff to formulate preliminary budget recommendations.
The recommendations are shared with the agencies and may be appealed by them to the Governor. Ultimately, all of the recommended appropriations, including those of the exempt agencies, are published in the executive budget document, the "blue book." Also published in the blue book is a report on "tax expenditures"- revenue not available to the General Revenue Funds, exemptions, and credits in tax laws. This part of the blue book is prepared by the Department of Taxation.
The Governor is required to present the executive budget to the General Assembly within four weeks after its organization early in Januaryof every odd-numbered year. However, in years in which a new Governor takes office, the executive budget may be presented by the new Governor as late as March 15.