Guided tour through Open Budgets
The goal of the City of Madrid’s budget visualization web is to enable any citizen to find, with just a few clicks, visually, and without having to dig into hundreds of pages full of tables, any figure from the city budgets in the last few years. If this is your first time and don’t where to start from, we’ll guide you through some of the most relevant features.
From the big figures to the small amounts
From the homepage you can access the overview page, which shows a quick comparison of the main revenues and expenditures, or access the policy page, where, at a glance, you can see how the budget is broken down into programs and policies. If you take a look at the colors, you’ll notice they’re grouped in some basic areas described in the upper bar and that, for example, 44.9% of the budget is spent on keeping basic public services running.
Not only the budget data, also the actual spending
The City of Madrid’s budget site not only tells you about the budget breakdown, but also about the actual execution every month. That is, you can find out how much of a given budget allocation has been spent up until last month: the actual figures are shown next to the budgeted ones in all the tables in the site and, also, graphically, in the data visualizations. The blue bands in the overview chart, for example, show you how much has been collected or spent so far, versus the total expected in the budget (the grey background).
The revenues also
This site also includes information about revenues. The visualization shows the main streams that make up the budget and how, for example, capital taxes are the biggest source of income for the city, followed by transfers from the central government, which collects VAT and income tax.
Quicker: use the search box
So far we’ve been browsing, up and down, in order to reach detailed figures from the overview and back. But if you’re interested in a particular topic there’s a much quicker way: use the search box, which looks into the budget data and help pages like this. Type, for example, the word "school". The search results page will show two items, two programmes which are part of the Education policy. If you select the first result you’ll see the spending budget for primary schools.
The evolution from 2011
Sometimes your curiosity will go further and you’ll wonder how a certain revenue or expenditure has evolved over the last years. ¿Is more money being allocated for a particular item? ¿Is a given tax collecting more revenue than a few years ago? The City of Madrid’s budget site contains data from 2011. So, for example, you can see how much was allocated, and spent, for public libraries since that year.
Who spent it?
So far we’ve been focusing in the functional classification, which breaks down the budget in a set of policies and programmes which tell us what the money is being spent for. But, in some cases, it’s interesting to know which department or public body is managing the spending. For example, in the Housing and urban planning policy you can see, broken down after you expand the City of Madrid item, which parts are being handled by the districts.
How is it spent?
The third leg of the spending budget is the economic classification, that is, how is the money spent? Is it paying personnel salaries, supplies, investments? Is it being transferred to third parties? For example, if we look at the public libraries policy, we’ll see that the biggest area, in blue, is allocated to pay the salaries of the staff. The table below confirms it: out of the 24 million euros budgeted for 2016, 21 are dedicated to personnel.
Another example: in the budget for Transportation promotion, control and development the biggest area, again in blue, is allocated to external transfers. In this case, the money the City of Madrid transfers to the Regional Transport Consortium of Madrid.
Any doubt, check the glossary
Concepts like savings, budget classifications (focusing on who spends the budget, how it does it, and what for) and definitions for the main taxes are available in the glossary. So you can answer all your questions.