Politics of Public Money, Second Edition / Edition 2

Politics of Public Money, Second Edition / Edition 2

by David A. Good
Pub. Date:
University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division

Paperback - Rent for

Select a Purchase Option (2nd Edition)
  • purchase options

Temporarily Out of Stock Online


Politics of Public Money, Second Edition / Edition 2

Public money is one of the primary currencies of influence for politicians and public servants. It affects the standards by which they undertake the nation’s business and impacts the standard of living of the nation’s citizens. David A. Good’s The Politics of Public Money examines the extent to which the Canadian federal budgetary process is shifting from one based on a bilateral relationship between departmental spenders and central guardians to one based on a more complex, multilateral relationship involving a variety of players.

This new edition offers an up-to-date account of the Canadian system, including the creation of the Parliamentary Budget Officer, the government’s response to the global financial crisis, Canada’s Economic Action Plan, strategic and operating reviews, the most recent attempts to reform the Estimates, and much more.

An insightful and incisive study of the changing budgetary process, The Politics of Public Money examines the promises and pitfalls of budgetary reform and sheds new light on the role insiders play in influencing government spending.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781442615526
Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division
Publication date: 01/22/2014
Edition description: 2nd Edition
Pages: 416
Product dimensions: 6.03(w) x 8.94(h) x 1.01(d)

Table of Contents

Foreword – Patrice Dutil



Part One: The Changing Politics of Public Money

1. Beyond Spenders and Guardians

Spenders and Guardians

From Old Village to New Town

Beyond Spenders and Guardians

Priority Setters


Priority Setters and Watchdogs

New Questions

Part Two: The Public Money Players

2. The Guardians of the Changing Role of the Budget Office

Guardians and Budget Functions

Guardians and Budget Components

Guardians and the Budgetary Process

Different Guardians

Guardians Diverging: ‘Let the Managers Manage … Come Hell or High Water’

Guardians and Central Reserves

Guardians Apart

3. Why Spenders Keep Spending

Getting Money

Keeping Money

Spending Money

The Reciprocity of Expenditure Information and Expenditure Increases

Priorities and Allocations, Not Performance and Allocations

4. The Priority Setters at the Centre

The Centre

The Most Important of all Relationships

Priorities, Big and Small

The Prime Minister’s Arms

Priority Setters and Shift Points

5. The Watchdogs: Barks that Bite

Building Credibility on Professionalism and Independence

The Performance Audit: The Audit for All Reasons

Mutual Expectations

Watching Both Spenders and Guardians

The Financial Watchdog and Internal Department Auditors

The Watchdogs and Parliamentarians

Indirect Influence, but Influence

Part Three: The Public Money Processes

6. Fiscal Aggregates: Controlling Totals

Credibility and Uncertainty

The Prudent Economic and Fiscal Outlook

The Prudent Fiscal Framework: Achieving Achievable Targets

Economic Stimulus

The Elastic Fiscal Dividend

Prudence and Its Consequences

Exposing the Fiscal Framework

Containing Aggregates by Making Allocations

7. Budget Allocations

Allocations Types

The Big Fixes

The Big-Ticket Items

The Must Dos

Small Budget Items

Tax Expenditures



Budget Allocations Are Incremental

8. Budget Implementation: Financial Management and Efficiency

On Paper

Successfully Implementing the Economic Action Plan

The First Line of Defence

Victims of Conflicting Norms: The Chief Financial Officer

The Second Line of Defence

Victims of the Intractability of Cultural Change: The Comptroller General

On Becoming Players

Part Four: New Prospects for Public Money

9. Parliament and Public Money

Parliament as Watchdog

Shaping Government Spending: The Commons Finance Committee

Approving Government Spending: The Business of Supply

Holding Government Accountable for Spending: The Public Accounts Committee

Realism and Reform

10. Budget Reforms

Budgets and Reforms

‘Rational’ Reform: The Road to Program Budgeting (pre-1962-78)

The Grand Design: Policy and Expenditure Management System (1979-83)

Incremental and Continuous Change (1984-93)

Program Review and Prudent Budgeting (1994-2003)

‘A Continuous Culture of Reallocation’ (2004-6)

Strengthening the Watchdogs: The Federal Accountability Act (2006-8)

Recalibration: Strategic and Operating Review (2007 and onward)

Reflections on Reforms

11. Doing Better with Public Money?

Theory and Practice

Reactive, but with Some Resilience

The Uneasy Balance of Competing Budgetary Objectives

Establish an Expenditure Review Committee of Cabinet

Restore a Treasury Board Secretariat Role in Expenditure Review and Allocation

Link Priorities, Expenditure Programs, and Performance

Institutionalize the Role of the Parliamentary Budget Officer

The Politics of Public Money



Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews