A budget shows a plan for how your PTA will raise money and spend money to implement the PTA mission. A budget does not dictate what your PTA must do. It simply represents what your PTA intends to do.

Developing a Budget

A finance or budget committee usually has the responsibility of developing a budget for the PTA. This committee may be elected or appointed according to the PTA bylaws and usually consists of three or five members, one of whom is the treasurer, who may act as chair. Steps to developing the budget:

  • Consider your PTA’s goals and the resources needed to achieve your planned activities.
  • Study the previous year’s budget and treasurer’s reports to determine how well that budget met your PTA’s needs.
  • Determine your PTA’s projected financial needs, taking into consideration the funds needed for the approved programs, fundraising events, and leadership development (i.e., Council/Regional trainings, State PTA Convention, National PTA Convention). Determine how funds will be raised to meet these requirements.
  • Develop a one-year budget that shows existing funds, as well as projected funds raised and anticipated expenditure or receipts for the year’s activities. Expenditures should equal receipts. Check your PTA bylaws to see how the year is defined. See Sample Budget.
  • Present the draft budget for approval to the PTA board or executive committee. Incorporate feedback and then present the draft budget to the PTA membership during a general meeting where a quorum is determined to be present. A majority vote of the members present and voting is required for adoption.

Using Your Budget

Throughout the year, the Finance Committee is responsible for tracking the actual results and comparing them to the budget. Whenever a new opportunity arises to further the mission of the PTA (e.g., running an unbudgeted activity or obtaining sponsor funding), the Finance Committee should carefully weigh whether it should be undertaken. Ideally, an unbudgeted activity should have a positive or neutral impact on the PTA's overall budget.

Amending the Budget

The budget is only an estimate of the planned expenditures for the year. When there are additional expenses or a change in an allocated expenditure, the budget may need to be amended by a vote of the association at any regular meeting, or at a special meeting called for that purpose. Check your bylaws for specific guidance.

See: Budgeting: Special Funds