Budget Year

The term budget year has at least two distinct meanings, one for the Congressional Budget process and one for the statutory application and defined for this latter in law by section 250(c)(12) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 (BBEDCA).

Though term “budget year” is specifically defined in section 250(c)(12) (BBEDCA), this was originally designed for purposes of the Executive Branch. This means that under BBEDCA the “budget year” is the fiscal year beginning on October 1 of the calendar in which a session of Congress begins – January 3 under the Constitution (unless changed by statute, which happens occasionally). 

Budget resolutions are adopted under section 301 (CBA) , and while the fiscal year remains the same, the year on which the “budget year” changes when the budget resolution is adopted for a fiscal year. Hence for budget resolution enforcement, the fiscal year to which it applies can vary between January 3 and whenever the budget resolution is adopted (April 15 by law). In most cases this will not matter, but when enforcing 302(f), 303, and 311, the “budget year” is the first fiscal year to which the budget resolution applies, it can be important as to whether the point of order applies. 

For purposes of the BBEDCA, the following definition from section 250(c)(12) (BBEDCA) is used:

(12) The term “budget year” means, with respect to a session of Congress, the fiscal year of the Government that starts on October 1 of the calendar year in which that session begins

GAO Glossary of Terms and Definition (September 2005)

Budget Year

See under Fiscal Year.

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CBO Glossary of Budgetary and Economic Terms (July 2016)

Budget Year

budget year: The fiscal year for which the budget is being considered. See fiscal year.


Budget Receipts


Budgetary Accounting