Rapporteurs: Child-oriented budgeting to be piloted in municipalities and wellbeing services counties
Rapporteurs Juha Aho and Mika Penttilä propose a joint child-oriented budgeting model for municipalities and wellbeing services counties based on a traffic-light classification. They recommend that child-oriented budgeting be launched with a pilot that would focus in the first stage on financial statements data.
Minister of Local Government Sirpa Paatero welcomes the idea that development would start with pilots.
“Child wellbeing is about the future of our country, and child-oriented budgeting will enable us to promote child-positive policies. This is why it is important that child-oriented budgeting in municipalities and wellbeing services counties has been investigated and that the model for it will be further developed through pilots,” says Minister Paatero.
Interministerial working groups to ensure cooperation between municipalities and wellbeing services counties
The rapporteurs propose that each wellbeing service county establish a cooperation group with representatives of both the county and municipalities. The cooperation groups would be tasked with preparing joint wellbeing objectives and indicators for the county and municipalities, for reconciling operational information and for preparing a joint analysis of the operating environment for wellbeing reports and budget proposals based on identified phenomena.
The rapporteurs also proposed first-stage operational indicators to monitor the wellbeing of children and young people. These indicators include the number of young people who have received a comprehensive school graduation diploma, the number of visits to school social workers and school psychologists as well as the number of children and young people who have been placed into care.
“It became evident during the project that data on the finances and operations of municipalities and hospital districts is often examined separately. It would be important for operations to be linked to euros and for data to be analysed across sectors. This would make it possible to understand how budgeted euros actually affect children and young people,” says Rapporteur Aho.
Child-oriented budgeting would mainly apply to people under the age of 18
The rapporteurs’ proposal limits child-oriented budgeting to people under the age of 18. As exception to this, the costs of, for example, outreach youth work and upper secondary education will be fully taken into account. Costs will be examined based on the service classification of the Aura automated financial reporting system in order to avoid increased reporting obligations.
In the traffic light classification, green is for universal preventive services, yellow is for services that require temporary support and red is for corrective services that require full-time support.
“From the beginning of next year, services for children, young people and families with children will be divided between two entities, the municipality and the wellbeing services county. We consider it justified for municipalities and wellbeing services counties to have a joint national model for child-oriented budgeting. This will provide us with an overall picture of what direction the wellbeing of children and young people has developed in,” says Rapporteur Penttilä.
The rapporteurs propose that the coordination of the pilots be handled by the Ministry of Finance and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.
The report is a step towards child-oriented budgeting by municipalities and wellbeing services counties
The chair of the project's monitoring group, Senior Ministerial Adviser Tanja Rantanen thanks the rapporteurs for their work.
“I consider the report a good step towards child-oriented budgeting by municipalities and wellbeing services counties. The rapporteurs’ proposal for pilots is justified, as child-oriented budgeting in local administration has so far only been carried out in a few individual municipalities. The schedule for possible pilots will require careful consideration so that municipalities and wellbeing services counties will be able to pilot a child-oriented budgeting model that is as close to ready as possible. Resources will also be needed for preparation and monitoring of the pilots,” Rantanen says.
Rantanen notes that municipalities and wellbeing services counties are interested in child-oriented budgeting, but are not all equally prepared for it. As a result, it is necessary to consider what party would have the best expertise to coordinate the voluntary work carried out by municipalities and wellbeing services counties. According to Rantanen, further preparations should also specify the delineation of costs to be taken into consideration in child-oriented budgeting and consider whether it would be possible to adopt child-oriented budgeting in stages.
The objective of the Ministry of Finance's project was to create models for implementing child-oriented budgeting and the monitoring of outturn data in municipalities and wellbeing services counties. The rapporteurs of the project were Head of Development Juha Aho and Director of Education and Cultural Services Mika Penttilä from the City of Oulu. The project is part of the implementation plan for the National Child Strategy.
Mika Penttilä, Rapporteur, tel. +358 44 703 9012, mika.penttila(at)ouka.fi
Juha Aho, Rapporteur, tel. +358 40 041 5773, juha.aho(at)ouka.fi
Tanja Rantanen, Senior Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 40 550 2092, tanja.rantanen(at)gov.fi
Heidi Järvenpää, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 50 430 6416, heidi.jarvenpaa(at)gov.fi